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19 January 2007 @ 11:16 am
Denzel Washington says Russell Crowe is a big "softy".  

Denzel Washington says Russell Crowe is a big "softy".

There were fears the two strong-willed actors would clash on the set of the recently completed film, American Gangster, but Washington said Crowe did not live up to his infamous reputation.

"Russell Crowe is cool. He's a good guy," Washington told AAP in an interview in Los Angeles.

"He's intense, but he's a sweetheart. He's a softy."

American Gangster, a crime drama set in 1970s New York and directed by Ridley Scott, is scheduled for release in November and will likely have Washington and Crowe in line for Oscars.

Washington's latest film, the thriller Deja Vu, which opened in Australian cinemas on Thursday, was directed by Scott's younger brother, Tony, whose credits include Top Gun, Crimson Tide and Man on Fire.

"I don't know if anyone else has starred in two separate movies with two brothers directing in the one year," Washington said.

In Deja Vu, set in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Washington plays a US government agent investigating a terrorist attack on a ferry packed with US Navy personnel.

The film was the first to be shot in the devastated city after the hurricane.

"After Katrina, we looked at filming in Seattle and Miami, but Tony was really keen for us to do it in New Orleans," Washington said.

"The people of New Orleans wanted us there.

"They were looking to get industry back to the city.

"So, we were the first film and spent tens of millions of dollars, hired locals and stayed in the hotels.

"So, it was good to be a part of helping the city get back on its feet."