Russell Crowe is again igniting controversy.

The film star who's temporarily put aside acting for singing allegedly lit up a cigarette while his band, The Ordinary Fear of God, performed in New Zealand. The country bans smoking in public venues.

His promoter says he saw Crowe smoke at the first of three concerts, but insists "it was very discreet" and the audience didn't react. The promoter says he's not sure if Crowe knew smoking on stage was illegal.

Crowe has been in trouble before for throwing a punch and a telephone.

The Dominion Post reports Crowe "took puffs from a cigarette, along with copious sips from what appeared to be a bottle of port" during a performance in Wellington.

The Post's reviewer said Crowe is a "stunningly average" performer who should stick to acting.

Crowe faces no legal action, but the venues could be fined.