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Bryan Brown didn’t pay for drinks for years thanks to Tom Cruise

Bryan Brown saved himself some money in the ’90s.
The Aussie actor, who starred opposite Tom Cruise in the 1988 movie “Cocktail” as a charismatic barkeep, says its success meant drinks were on the house.
“I got a lot of free drinks all over the world from that movie,” he told The Post in a recent interview, adding that the scenes of him and Cruise, 61, juggling glasses and cocktail mixers “completely changed the nature of bartending for probably the next 12 years.”
The Australian actor, 76, can currently be seen in the Netflix miniseries “Boy Swallows Universe” based on the Trent Dalton book of the same name.
In it, he plays Arthur ‘Slim’ Halliday, which is based on a real-life charismatic criminal with a long rap sheet, who for a time was a babysitter and friend for a young boy.
Brown says he was immediately drawn in when he read the script and loved that his character was presented with “no judgment.”
6 Tom Cruise and Bryan Brown in “Cocktail.” ©Buena Vista Pictures/courtesy E
6 Bryan Brown and Rachel Ward at the Golden Globes on Jan. 28, 1984. Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
“We live in a world where we judge everything,” he explained. “And instead of just taking it on and going, ‘Well, that’s life,’ (instead) we tend to judge other lives all the time. More so these days. I think with social media and stuff, everyone’s got an opinion on someone’s life.”
That’s not to say the “F/X” star is excusing their bad behavior.
“We see the mess that their life is,” he explained, “but we also see them as loving, funny, desperate to make a quick buck and pay their rent just like everyone else … that as well as the dysfunction which involves drugs and alcohol and criminality and all that stuff.”
6 Bryan Brown as Slim Halliday in “Boy Swallows Universe.” Courtesy of Netflix
6 Rachel Ward and Bryan Brown in “The Thorn Birds.” ©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett Collection
6 Maeve Dermody, Bryan Brown, Director Rachel Ward and Sophie Lowe of “Beautiful Kate” pose for a portrait during the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. WireImage
Brown first gained notice for his role in 1980’s “Breaker Morant” and became an international star with 1983’s “The Thorn Birds” opposite Richard Chamberlain, Barbara Stanwyck and a British actress named Rachel Ward, who he married that year.
The couple, who share three children and grandchildren, live in Australia.
The decision to live Down Under meant Brown decided to calibrate his career and course on presenting “Australian characters.”
“I was just like ‘OK, well, I’ll do stuff at home,’” he continued. “Or I’ll produce and make my own stuff. So I was always busy.”
6 Bryan Brown in 1988. ©Universal/Courtesy Everett Collection
The “F/X” star is “grateful” for his long career.
Brown, who says he’s shot in over 20 countries, calls it “a quite wonderful way to live your life, seeing the world like that.”
He added: “I’m pretty grateful for everything that’s happened to me.”

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