Eli Roth defends Russell Crowe against anti-Semitic accusations


Just a few days ago, Russell Crowe caused quite a stir by drunk tweeting his random thoughts concerning what he described as the “barbaric” practices of circumcision and abortion. In response, Kaiser had a lot of fun with Crowe’s obviously amusing and joking statements about these topics, especially when he called out Jewish director Eli Roth, who is not only friends with Crowe but also produced the actor’s upcoming movie, The Man With the Iron Fist. If you’ll remember correctly, Eli Roth has also endured his own infamous Twitter controversy, which took place about a year and a half ago and consisted of a shameless amount of cyber sex and tissue evidence. So when several movie blogs stumbled over each other in a mad dash to see who could be the first to label Crowe’s words as “anti-Semitic,” it’s only natural that Roth would be at the defensive forefront:

Eli Roth is outraged that a reporter for The Hollywood Reporter took what he says was a “joking exchange between friends” — Eli and Russell Crowe — and then attacked Crowe as being anti-Semitic.

It all started when Eli and Russell — who often tease each other on Twitter — were joking about circumcision. Crowe tweeted, “I love my Jewish friends. I love the apple and the honey and the funny little hats but stop cutting yr babies,” adding, “I’ll take attentive parenting over barbarism.”

Apparently a reporter from The Hollywood Reporter saw the exchange and went after Russell with a headline that said he “insults Jews.”

Eli tells TMZ, “The headline blatantly attempts to make Russell look like an anti-Semite. It’s tabloid journalism at its worst.”

Eli adds, “No one contacted either of us. It’s terrible. Russell is a great person and respectful of all religions.”

And, Eli says, “The press is trying to terrify celebrities into not using Twitter. They want to show they can still ruin you. It’s sickening.”

[From TMZ]

While Eli Roth obviously has a vested interest in Crowe’s public image at this point, I’d also wager that the two have a pretty good understanding between themselves of what constitutes a joke. While perhaps Crowe misjudged the collective Twitter response (especially when it comes to opportunistic reporters), all of this should be taken in context of Crowe’s overall Twitter pattern, which is generally casual when it comes to his vernacular and certainly not meant to be taken seriously. Still, does Roth have a point when he claims that certain media outlets would hope to intimidate celebrities into not using Twitter? Perhaps, but I think the more likely culprit is that Hollywood Reporter recently moved into a subscription format and would hope to reel in more paid readers with the help of so-called “controversial” headlines.

Meanwhile, Crowe was also snapped in his native Australia while taking a yacht-associated ride on a jet-ski. I’ll let you be the judge of that little excursion.

Correction: I accidentally posted photos of James Packer, the billionaire that was jet-skiing with Russell, whose physical transformation has indeed been drastic but, well, not that drastic. Here are some updated photos below:




Photos courtesy of Fame Pictures

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36 Responses to “Eli Roth defends Russell Crowe against anti-Semitic accusations”

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  1. jinni says:

    Is the guy on the jet ski is really Russell Crowe?? Are you sure that’s him? For real? Day-um he blew up.

  2. StephanieMarie says:

    When did Crowe’s comments get upgraded to anti-Semitic??

  3. Mairead says:

    As much as I hate to defend these two gimps – context is everything.

  4. Annie_Grey says:

    That’s not Russell.

  5. Rose says:

    Crowe look like ‘Peter Griffin’ in those photos.

  6. mln76 says:

    Isn’t Janice Min running Hollywood Reporter now??? I expect there are going to be more and more salacious and stupid headlines on HR.

  7. Jane says:

    That doesn’t look like Russell Crowe and I am talking about the face, not just the body. I don’t think that is him.

  8. duh says:

    How about anti-arabic? Muslims are circumcised too.

  9. luls says:

    ‘Arabic’ is a culture, not a religion. In case u didnt notice, Arabs come in many religions. There are Jews, Muslims, Christians & atheists in the Middle East.
    I think you meant to write “anti-Islamic”, not “anti-arabic”.

  10. lucy2 says:

    Probably was just a joke between them, but here’s an idea…don’t do it in a public forum like Twitter! I’m amazed how stupid some of these celebs are about stuff like that (no I’m really not).

  11. Solveig says:

    June 12th, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    When did Crowe’s comments get upgraded to anti-Semitic??


    I was wondering the same… I didn’t delve into more details of this matter (Crowe’s rants) but I don’t rembember that his words became an anti-Semitic issue. I suppose that this “upgrade” is for pubblicity.
    Or at least I hope so.

  12. Julie says:

    Some celebrities think because they are stars, they can run their mouths anyhow about how people should live – they forget that they are not qualified and that we the public are not as gullible and susceptible as they think! Crowe and many others like him can keep their apologies.

  13. jinni says:

    Ok. I knew he looked strange, but I figured that sometimes the weight gain can distort facial features.

  14. duh says:

    luls – circumcision is common in arabic countries so I guess it concerns all of them – Muslims (who are the majority), Jews and Christians who are living there.

    And yes – I meant arabic culture, not only Islamic religion so I was correct writing “anti-arabic”.

  15. jc126 says:

    Yes, how dare two friends joke around! @@

  16. Trillion says:

    Interesting side note: “Semitic” actually refers to “descendants of Shem”and encompasses Arabs and Jews alike.

  17. Fuzzy Cat says:

    There is something oddly likeable about Eli and I think he is hot!

  18. Lbar says:

    @Trillion: Not to mention Ethiopians for some random reasons. Kind of funny cause Jews compose only about 10% of the semitic population yet the term is loosely thrown around.

  19. Shazza says:

    Fuzzy Cat-
    I used to like Eli until he started dating Peaches Geldolf. There was a guy that slept with her then sold pics of her doing drugs and half naked.Yeah, douche move but instead of being upset with the guy, Eli took it upon himself to expose the guy’s family-telling their names, address and where the sister attended college. That was not cool.

  20. Chris says:

    The problem with manufacturing reasons to label every little thing anti-Semitic is that after awhile people become desensitized to it and then when someone is genuinely anti-Semitic the public aren’t as outraged by it as they should be.

  21. Emma says:

    I don’t like Eli he’s kinda creepy and seems like an asshole. And he’s kinda stupid and really sleazy. Also Russell Crowe is an idiot to. I used to really like him as an actor, but after these tweets I just can not get over how dumb he sounds.

    Also the term Semitic does include Arabs and ethopians, but the term anti Semitic has been defined for centuries as being anti Jews. I think it’s kinda stupid and a very inaccurate term to describe dislike only to Jewish people.

  22. Lara says:

    Oh my God! Just leave Russell alone! In nowadays Jewish people replaced African-Americans, always playing the “victim card”. It’s beyond ridiculous. We recently had a major situation with Tony Kushner in New York, where he was also accused of being an Anti-Semite. An acclaimed Jewish play-writer simply had an honest opinion about current state of affairs between Israel and Palestine. As a result, he was almost denied an Honorary Degree.

  23. mp says:

    who cares? Everybody is entitled to their opinions now matter how stupid or intelligent, this is what America is about. Plus it is interesting entertainment to watch someone make an ass out themselves also.

  24. Kat says:

    Crowe is an old drunk. If they were fooling around like that they should do it in private not on twitter. Morons.

  25. ZenB!tch says:

    I want eli roth to address the city of san francisco.http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2011/06/10/san-franciscos-proposed-circumcision-ban-galvanizes-religious-opposition/

    I guess more Jewish and some type of Christian babies will all be born in San Mateo, Marin and Alameda counties from now on.

  26. Shay says:

    Saying that a practice is barbaric is not anti-Semitic.
    Its not only jewish people that practice circumcision. Jeez.
    These media outlets also need to educate themselves on the term Semitic and what it actually includes, not just Jewish people, but all people from a particular region, including Arabs.

    Ever since Russell Crowe threw a phone at an incompetent moron, who was getting paid for doing a crap job (if the circumstances behind Russell’s stay at the Mercer are really considered), the media target Crow. Anyone would have been pushed to the limit and tossed the phone. I know I would because there is no excuse for crap customer service when your’e paying thousands for a service, or stay in a hotel.

    The American media treats ditzes like Paris Hilton (sex tape, moron, questionable animal owner, etc) with more respect.

  27. Gossip Owl says:

    Dear humans,
    Please stop wasting headlines when someone makes a racist or homophobic comment. It’s a drag and I don’t care unless they make a comment against owls. But really who can ever hate an owl? We’re all so loveable.

  28. Yasmine says:

    @Gossip Owl: Hahahahaha!!!!! Commentators on this site always make me laugh.

  29. Ruby says:

    Aussie sense of humor. Russ & Eli are comfortable enough to exchange some banter. Aussies aren’t as politically correct as Americans. Most of us take things with a grain of salt.

  30. judyjudy says:

    Mutilating an infant’s genitals is okay, but saying you oppose it is culturally offensive? Hunh?

  31. Kim says:

    Kudos to Eli for defending his friend.

  32. Joe Shmoe says:

    The Jewish faith is hyper-represted in the media. That’s why the term ‘anti-semite’ gets thrown around so easily.

  33. Enny says:

    Yes, it was certainly a giant leap to think Russell was referring specifically to Jews. While other cultural and/or religious groups might also circumcise, I think the apples and honey and funny hat comments made it pretty clear his tirade was directed at Jews. But, I guess we all see what we want to see.

  34. Liz says:

    Labelling Crowe as anti-semitic is ridiculous. People obviously have short memories, because he donated a substantial sum of money 7 years ago to restore the library of a Montreal Talmudic school that was fire-bombed.
    See http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/fr/1125605/posts

  35. misspdx says:

    Hear! Hear! Shane 🙂 ITA

  36. misspdx says:

    @ Enny.. I think he was directing it more towards Eli in a ” funny ” guy to guy manner..not towards Jews in general