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Mel, Lies And Videotape

Last week, I blogged about screenwriter Joe Eszterhas’ screed againt Mel Gibson, which included allegations of Gibson’s antisemitism. For his part, Gibson claimed the statements attributed to him were “utter fabrications” (although he was not referring specifically to the claims of antisemitism).

Eszterhas has hit back, claiming he has Gibson rants on tape.

Joe Eszterhas: I’d like to respond to Mel line by line. He says, “The great majority of the facts as well as the statements attributed to me are utter fabrication.” He should be very careful calling me a liar. We have a recording of his actions and statements that my son Nick made in Costa Rica. There were at least four other people present when he exploded in that rage. Naomi also witnessed things he said about killing Oksana, and his constant anti-Semitic remarks. He should be very careful.

SW: And he says that as man of a principle, if Mel was this person you describe, you should have withdrawn from the project.

JE: I didn’t withdraw from the project because I love the project. It’s a great, heroic story. I felt trapped. It was a project initiated by Mel. I couldn’t legally or morally take it from him and write it as a spec script. I was hoping the power of the story would overcome his anti-Semitism. I hoped to convert him through the power of the script. I wanted to write, and I did write, the Jewish Braveheart.

SW: Some are saying that you only wrote this letter out of resentment, after Warner Bros. rejected the script?

JE: In an interview I did with the New York Times on Feb 5, before the script delivered, I said I’d seen him explode at people, and that Oksana was right when she said that he needed medication. I also said that if I saw anti-Semitism creep into the script, I’d take my name off the project.

SW: Did you ever confront him when he made anti-Semitic remarks?

JE: We had a terrific argument over his notion that the Torah talked about the sacrifice of Christian babies. I told him he was confusing the Torah with the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. He said, “it’s the Torah check it.”

SW: And when he used a term like “oven-dodgers”?

JE: I would say, “Dude, stop this shit.” Or I’d roll my eyes.

But these things happened over a period of time. It’s not like he would say these anti-Semitic things every hour, every day. I compressed the things he’d said.

—-

SW: What is on the tape you have?

JE: Nick has a digital recording: there’s a lot on it, of the rage in Costa Rica. Nick taped a big sequence of it. We went up to the dining room. Mel throws a cell phone, goes running around the side of house, screaming all the way through. He goes to a lower room, destroys the totem pole in the billiard room. He screams again about Oksana. When we were up there, Nick had the iPod in his pocket, and he was frightened.

SW: What are you going to do with it?

JE: For the moment, I’m holding on to it. Mel needs to understand I don’t like being called a liar. And I have evidence. This tape testifies to both actions and statements. The violence that he’s doing and things he’s screaming into the night.

 —-

And in terms of the script, I’m heartbroken. I put my heart and soul in it. It’s in the hands of a person who I’m convinced hates Jews. A tragic situation in my mind. I asked him to do the decent thing and give me the script back. Let me get it made.

 

Meanwhile, Gibson has denied he hates the Jews Beatles.

Mel Gibson is telling friends … he NEVER said John Lennon deserved to die — in fact, he’s a huge Beatles fan and he plays their music all the time.

Sources tell TMZ, screenwriter Joe Eszterhas’ allegations the actor celebrated John Lennon’s death are just false. As one source put it, “It’s not uncommon to hear The Beatles at Gibson’s house.”

The source adds, Gibson was even playing “Imagine” at a recent function — the same song Eszterhas says Mel bashed recently, claiming, “Imagine. I hate that f**king song. I’m glad [Lennon’s] dead.”

Because G-d forbid we should get the wrong idea about him.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
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