September 17, 1998 12:00 AM

Woody Allen was uncharacteristically approachable at last night’s New York premiere of his latest comedy, “Small Time Crooks.” He was also modest, admitting that he doesn’t think he’s ever made a great film (despite the Oscars over the years and the critics’ constant praise — for his filmmaking). “I’m not being falsely modest,” the Woodman told PEOPLE last night. “If you look at great films, like ‘Citizen Kane’ and ‘Rashomon,’ ‘The Bicycle Thief’ or ‘The Grand Illusion.’ I’ve never made anything that remotely compares to those.” Meanwhile, Hugh Grant, who costars in “Crooks” with Allen and Tracey Ullman, told PEOPLE that it was “completely surreal to wake up and find a fax from Woody saying, be in one of my films.” The invitation came as a total surprise, Grant added. “I woke up one morning, thinking another day of despondency and unemployment.”

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