By the mid-1990's Australian actor Russell Crowe had proven himself with a diversity of roles that included everything from a gullible dishwasher to a brutal Nazi skinhead, and even a gay plumber. But it wasn't until the 1997 blockbuster L.A. Confidential that American audiences took notice. Just three years later, Crowe vaulted to A-list Hollywood stardom with his charismatic and Oscar-winning performance in Gladiator. Crowe's smoldering on-screen intensity has led some to compare him to a young Marlon Brando. But the comparison also includes his reputation as a bad boy, with Crowe having made tabloid headlines on numerous occasions.