Ray Winstone helped crewmembers on his new movie avoid drink driving charges in Australia after they smashed up a camera car during a wild weekend off.

The British hardman charmed authorities in Winton, Queensland, Australia - where he was shooting PROPOSITION - allowing the guilty parties to escape charges.

Director JOHN HILLCOAT says, "All hell broke loose.

"The camera car rolled in the middle of town, on the main road. It was found upside down, abandoned, because everyone was over the limit.

"The police got really freaked out.

"But Ray Winstone was like a force of nature - he won them all over. When cops came around on set, Ray took them aside.

"He would bet on the horse races and win up to GBP2000. Then it was an open tab at the bar for the whole town.

"Ray could have been the mayor of Winton."