However, in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein and other harassment and abuse scandals, his joke was made to a room of stunned silence.
While presenting at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards, Crowe went into the awkward story that involved a sex scene between himself and his co-star in the film, Jacquie McKenzie, according to The Wrap.
"I was sodomising Jacquie McKenzie on the set of Romper Stomper and I didn't actually intend to do that but I was trying to keep my bits away from her bits, and she'd been given one of those pieces of elastic that the girls get when you do the love scenes, which protects them from all things, and my bits and pieces were in a little canvas sack with a drawstring, similar to when you used to buy Gold Rush chewing gum as a child".
"The way I told that story was to elicit that half cringe/half laugh reaction".
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"And it was actually in my desire to keep the bits apart". Obviously I was only intending to make people laugh. It wasn't until the opening night of the film that it was pointed out by none other than Jackie McKenzie's lovely late mother that we were in fact, in her mind, engaged in sodomy. "I didn't mean any offense to anyone and it wasn't a comment on other issues". "Anyway that was just a story about sensitivity", the Noah actor added.
McKenzie came forward with her own story of sexual harassment last week and condemned the "bullying and bad behaviour" synonymous with the industry while walking the red carpet on Wednesday.
McKenzie claims she reported the conduct when she was in her 20s, only to be ignored twice. "One response to a legal letter I did send - demanding an assurance I would be safe on set - was met by the producer saying: 'I can't give this letter to him [an actor]".
McKenzie herself has defended Crowe, stating that there had been "no blurry lines" while shooting the sex scene in question and that the anecdote "bears no relevance" to the "very important conversation of sexual harassment in the workplace". The following day, Crowe issued a statement apologising for offending people. As there should never be. "Over the eons, he and I have often laughed at the awkwardness we felt shooting that scene", adding that "the crew dealt "sensitively" with the both of us as we all navigated a confronting scene".
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