Aussie actor RUSSELL CROWE has kept a low profile since his latest film, American Gangster, started shooting in New York this month. Crowe, director Ridley Scott and the rest of the film’s cast and crew took over Courtroom 224 at Brooklyn Supreme Court August 22. (Crowe co-stars in the Universal production with Denzel Washington, but much to the dismay of many female court employees, Mr. Washington was not on the set that day.)
The film is based on the 1970s true crime story of Frank Lucas (Washington) who smuggled heroin into the United States via a particularly dramatic mule — the flag-draped coffins of American soldiers returning from Vietnam. Crowe plays the role of Detective Ritchie Roberts, who tries to bring Lucas down.
Crew member Gil Freston was manning the fourth floor of the Adams Street courthouse, which held the hair, makeup and wardrobe area for the extras. He told the Eagle that the film was just over two weeks into a 75-day shoot. In addition to Downtown Brooklyn and McCarren Park in Williamsburg, the crew has filmed in Harlem and the South Bronx. An intern on the set, Freston explained that part of his job keeping those that don’t look dressed for the ’70s out of the camera’s range during outdoor shoots. T-shirts for example, are out. Bell-bottom jumpsuits and gabardine pants are presumably in.