Crowe's al-Qaida kidnap plot
13:30 09 March 2005
Russell Crowe has revealed he was the target of a terrifying al-Qaida kidnap plot.
The New Zealand-born actor was warned by agents of the FBI, Federal Bureau of Investigation, that he was being targeted by the terrorist network.
Crowe claims the FBI told him - before the horrific 9/11 attacks in 2001 - that terrorists had devised a "cultural destabilisation plan" to take a number of high profile actors hostage to shock the US.
He told Australia's GQ magazine: "That was the first time I'd ever heard the phrase al-Qaida. It was something to do with a recording picked up by a French policewoman, I think, in either Libya or Algiers.
"It was about - and here's another little touch of irony - taking iconographic Americans out of the picture as a sort of cultural destabilisation plan."
The Oscar-winning actor says the the threat was so serious he was provided with protection for four years.
In the early months of 2001, Crowe claims he attended a host of film premieres and high profile awards ceremonies flanked by fully armed FBI agents scouting for possible threats.
At some ceremonies agents even disguised themselves in dinner jackets.
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