Russel Crowe
Actor Russell Crowe waves during an impromptu performance on Rome's Trinita' dei Monti steps May 15, 2010. Reuters/Tony Gentile

There is speculation in the media that Terri Irwin is dating Hollywood actor Russell Crowe. The wife of the late Steve Irwin, however, has denied these rumours, explaining that Crowe is just a family friend.

"We were very lucky to have known Russell for a number of years. He was Steve's friend and then after Steve died, he became a loyal friend of the Irwin family, but we're just friends," Terri told Entertainment Tonight in an exclusive interview. She added that Crowe is an “amazing” person who helped them protect the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve from strip mining. The “Gladiator” actor had taken to social media to help the Irwins save the reserve.

Terri and her daughter Bindi call the actor a "wildlife gladiator,” a “great dad” to his two sons and a “great human being.” The Irwin family loves the actor, but according to Terri, she is not "in love" with him.

Terri recently walked the red carpet at the annual Steve Irwin Gala Dinner in Los Angeles this weekend. The 52-year-old shared an emotional story prior to her husband's death in 2006. The couple was planning to have a third child. "I said to Steve, 'Let's have a third'. And he said, 'You have a girl and you have a boy. What are you hoping for?'"

She also revealed that Steve was excited when Bindi was born but wished for a boy when Terri was pregnant for the second time with son Robert. She proudly said that he did not have trouble raising them at all.

Bindi is now 18, while Robert is 13. Their dad, the famous Crocodile Hunter, died more than a decade ago when a stingray barb pierced his chest while filming a show off the north Queensland coast. The family has dedicated their lives to wildlife conservation.

Bindi, who recently won "Dancing With the Stars," was the guest of honour at the Steve Irwin Gala Dinner. "It's such an honour to see so many people joining us... as human beings we really have to find peace and happiness and light within ourselves to be able to make a positive change in the world,” she said.

She and her family spend their time between Australia and the US. They have a family zoo in Australia on the Sunshine Coast. Check out their picture from the Steve Irwin Gala Dinner below.