Russell Crowe was up for the part of Johnny Cash but he turned it down.
While speaking to Nova FM’s Fitzy and Wippa on Thursday, the actor revealed that he was offered the part of Cash in 2005’s “Walk The Line”. Ultimately the part went to Joaquin Phoenix because Crowe thought that taking the role would earn him praise that he didn’t think he “had earned.”
“The only one I have a tinge of regret about, really, and possibly do regret is turning down the Johnny Cash biopic”, he said.
“It was one of those things of internal morality. It was like, ‘This is a dream job for me!’ I’d been playing, singing Johnny Cash songs since I was a little boy, but I felt that I would be then getting stuff that I hadn’t earned.”
Crowe added that he felt it would be like “climbing on Johnny Cash’s back to get Grammy nominations”. “It just felt wrong to me.”
Although when the film hit the big screens and Crowe saw it he immediately regretted turning it down. “From the very first notes, when the camera is pushing through the prison, the knife jabs in the heart began,” he said.
Russell noted that he is a big fan of Cash and that after his movie “Gladiator” the “Ring Of Fire” singer sent him a letter telling him that he saw the movie three times in the theatre.