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How Russell Crowe's 6-Year-Old Son Got Him to Quit Smoking

Tue, July 27, 2010 5:34pm EDT by 1 Comment

The surly Oscar winner, who smoked for 36 years, reveals a softer side when it comes to his family.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Russell Crowe after all these years, it’s that he doesn’t like being told what to do. So whether you’re a hotel clerk or a director, it’s best not to cross Crowe. But since becoming a father to Charlie, 6, and Tennyson, 3, Russell has mellowed… a little.

For years, the Oscar winner kept his dirty habit of cigarette smoking from his kids (in the hope that they wouldn’t want to emulate him), but he hadn’t counted on Charlie sneaking up on him. When his son caught him, it was all the impetus Russell needed to quit.

“I was in my office,” he said during a press conference regarding his role in a live stadium version of Ben Hur, “and I thought I heard my office door open and I looked around and couldn’t see anything, so I had my cigarette. Later on I leant over to put my cigarette out and [Charlie] was lying between the couch and the table and he very definitely saw me having a smoke. And that was my very last one.”

This, after smoking “40 on an easy day,” for 36 years (doing the math, since he just turned 46 in April, that means he started smoking when he was 10! 10 years old! Gross!), but, “on a day when I would be up at 4am and still up at midnight, then it was 60-plus and it just got to the point where my body was telling me I had to stop.”

As horrifying as it is that the superstar smoked as much as he did (that’s about 18,000 cigarettes every year) for as long as he did (again, since he was 10!), at least he finally found an excuse to stop. Good on ya, Charlie! Way to help save your dad’s life!