From the Dungeon to the Pitch: Working Out With Russel Crowe



Russel Crowe leans back on the back two legs of his chair. He’s legs are stretched out in front of him, crossed at the ankles, arms are folded across his chest. He wears a tight fitting rugby sweater and jeans. The chair is by a sturdy wooden table. Jeff sits in chair by the table, bent over, head down, forearms resting on his massive thighs. The room is lit by torches. 


Jeff does not respond. Ten seconds pass. Then twenty.

RUSSEL CROWE: Tell us, mate, what’s going on?

Jeff sits up in the chair, stares at Russel Crowe. Says nothing.  Russel Crowe places his foot on the seat of Jeff’s chair between Jeff’s leg. It is meant as an act of dominance. Jeff scoots back in his chair a bit. 

RUSSEl CROWE: (angry, firm, commanding) Look, Brother! If you’re not going to let me help you than we’re really just wasting time here— yours and mine.

Jeff stands to leave.

JEFF: Then I’ll go.

Russel Crowe stands up quickly chest to chest, blocking Jeff’s ability to leave. 

RUSSEL CROWE: I don’t think so. (pause) Sit down.

Jeff does not sit. 

RUSSEL CROWE: I said sit!

Jeff snarls in contempt and then, very slowly, sits.

Several seconds pass.

RUSSEL CROWE: What can I do to help you, mate?

Jeff shakes his head.

RUSSEL CROWE: What do you want from me?

JEFF: (a whisper) Hurt me.

RUSSEL CROWE: (certain he’s misheard) Excuse me?

JEFF: (louder, unapologetically) Hurt me!

RUSSEL CROWE: You mean like in a sexual way? I’m not gay, Brother.

JEFF: I don’t give a fuck. You asked what you could do for me and I told you. I took a huge risk. Thanks for shutting me down asshole. Did you have another question?

RUSSEL CROWE: Man, you’re a dick! I’m just here trying to help you and—

JEFF: Then fucking hurt me. Take a swing at me, kick me in the balls, I don’t give a fuck. And I swear to God I won’t strike back. I just want you to help me feel on the outside like I’m feeling on the inside! Come on, motherfucker! Do it!!!

RUSSEL CROWE: You’re embarrassing yourself, mate, why you reckon— I mean what’s behind all of that shit?

JEFF: Ooooh no! We’re not doing any of that today!! None of that psychoanalyzing Jeff shit. I told you what I want. I told you what I need. And you’re clearly too much of a pussy to bring it, so why don’t you do us both a favor and fuck off.

RUSSEL CROWE: (becoming more perturbed) Easy there brother. ‘understand you’re having a rough go of it and all but—

JEFF: Oh Jesus!


JEFF: Why didn’t they send Catherine Zeta Jones in here today? I coulda used someone with some balls.

Russel Crowe explodes. The heels of both hands connecting with Jeff’s chest flipping his chair backwards and sending Jeff rolling onto the floor. Jeff quickly stands, is exceptionally proud of himself. He slowly steps forward bringing himself nose-to-nose with Russel Crowe. Crowe does not back down. Jeff gives him a quick kiss on the lips. Russel Crowe takes a huge step back and backhand’s Jeff across the face. Jeff smiles, exposing teeth painted red with blood. 

JEFF: (smirk) Attaboy. That’s better. Maybe you do have something between those tree trunk thighs of yours.

Jeff picks up the toppled chair and spins it to sit on it backwards. Russel Crowe, calming down, steps back and sits again in his own chair. 

RUSSEL CROWE: What makes you want to make the ones who want help you hurt you?

JEFF: What makes the ones who say they love me want to hurt me?

RUSSEL CROWE: Who’s hurt you?

JEFF: You know what, fuck all this bullshit, I’m not having this conversation with you. You want to help me? Show me you’re man enough— or fuck, I’ll settle for woman enough— or—

RUSSEL CROWE: Y’can’t say that mate, it misogynistic.

JEFF: Then you don’t understand what I meant. Hell, I’d take the strength of a woman over the weakness of a man any day.

RUSSEL CROWE: And what you makes you think a man has to be violent with another man just to show he’s a man?

JEFF: Is that what I think? (then to himself) Is that what I think?

Jeff “breaks character,” shakes his head quickly back and forth.

JEFF: Is this working for you?

RUSSEL CROWE: (breaks, laughs) Fuck no! —“mate!!”

They both laugh. 

JEFF: Wanna start over and go a different way?

RUSSEL CROWE: Let’s do it.



Jeff stirs from a deep sleep when he hears the doorknob turn. Russel Crowe sticks his head in. 

RUSSEL CROWE: (cheerful, not shouting) Reveille!

JEFF: Jesus, what time is it?

RUSSEL CROWE: It’s zero five thirty, mate.

Russel Crowe holds two coffee cups by the handles in one hand, a mesh bag for athletic gear in the other. He wears a rugby uniform.  He hands one  of the coffees to Jeff as Jeff sits up in bed. 

JEFF: Mmm. Thanks. (sleepy voice) God, I can’t tell you how long it’s been since someone brought me coffee in bed. (remembering) That’s not true. Spud did a couple of weeks ago—after I asked him to. Havn’t been woken up by anything but my busy brain in a while either. I could get used to this— a little bit later would have been nice.

RUSSEL CROWE: No brother, we got too much to sort out. Now pound that coffee and let’s hit the pitch.

JEFF: The pitch?!

RUSSEL CROWE: Where better to get shit sorted out than on the rugby pitch?

Russel Crowe slaps the side of Jeff’s thigh through the bedclothes. 

RUSSEL CROWE: Come on, pal. Up and attum!

Jeff places the coffee cup on the bedside table and swings his legs off the bed with a sore groan. Glances up at Russel Crowe.

JEFF: Uh, I’m naked bro.

Russel Crowe drops the mesh bag containing Jeff’s rugby kit including boots on the floor beside the bed. 

RUSSEL CROWE: Remember I served in the Kiwi Navy and played semi-pro rugby before becoming a Gladiator. I’ve seen my share of naked blokes.

JEFF: Well that may be so but when you see me with a full-on hard on, it’s at least gonna be after you buy me dinner.

Jeff makes the “turn around” symbol with his finger. Russel Crowe  reluctantly complies.

RAPID-CUT SEQUENCE: shot of jock being pulled on over Jeff’s muscular ass, on come the black Gilbert shorts, the socks, the boots, the jersey falls into place over his massive frame.



Russel Crowe and Jeff run onto the rugby pitch for a two-man calisthenics work out. Beneath dramatic score (solo soprano bugle) we see a montage of the two athletic studs engaging in tire flips, suicide drills, agility footwork field work, pull-ups, sit-ups (holding each other’s feet), push-ups, and finally stadium stair climbs. 

Music ends and we meet the two panting at the top of the stairs. 

JEFF: I’m getting too old for this shit.

RUSSEL CROWE: Bullshit. Your fitter than most men half your age.

JEFF: That’s because this crop of twenty-five year-olds grew up on processed carbs and Playstation. They’re a bunch of fat-asses!

RUSSEL CROWE: Speaking of asses—!

Russel Crowe slaps Jeff hard on the ass. 

RUSSEL CROWE: Race you to the showers!

He bolts down the stairs toward the vomitorium.

Jeff does a quick aside to the camera before racing down after him.

JEFF: See y’all tomorrow!

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