The Odd Couple: Jodie Foster’s Surprising—And Enduring—Friendship with Mel Gibson

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Much has been written about Jodie Foster in the hours since her mish-mash of a poignant, brilliant speech at the Golden Globes. Did she come out as being a lesbian? Yes, in a way that was somehow both definitive and circular.  Should it matter that she loves women? Of course not, though it does matter that she is willing to say so publically. Does she deserve privacy? Yes, but getting up in front of millions of eyeballs on a national awards show is an odd place to ask for it.

More interesting to us, though, is the other “admission” the 50-year-old actor/director/Oscar winner made as she accepted the Hollywood Foreign Press’ Lifetime Achievement Award. No, we’re not talking about the fact that she’s single. We speak of the fact that Mel Gibson is apparently one of her closest friends—close enough to bring as her date (she could’ve just gone with her sons, right?), close enough to be the one who presented Foster with a stuffed hamster on a silver platter (we love Robert Downey Jr., but that joke fell flat), and close enough to get a twinkly-eyed shout out from Foster, whose last directorial effort, The Beaver, starred Gibson and was released in the wake of the scandal surrounding his anti-Semitic, homophobic, sexist beliefs. She did it in the context of talking about her family and friends–the “lifers” who have been her support system. “You know,” she told Gibson from the stage, “you saved me too.”

There is no way to know the foundation upon which the Foster-Gibson friendship is built, though she must admire his willingness as a director to take on controversial topics. For years, Foster talked openly about wanting to make a film about the filmmaker and photographer Leni Riefenstahl, whose film Triumph of the Will some people argue was responsible for Hitler’s rise. The idea is as audacious and potentially controversial as Gibson’s 2004 indie blockbuster Passion of the Christ. But what perplexes us is that Foster’s rationale for developing that script, as she told Los Angeles back in 2002, was that she feels it brings to the fore the issue of artists’ responsibility. “Fascist art makes form and beauty more important than anything else, which is basically superficial thinking. But artists need to be deeper thinkers,” she told me in that interview. “Because if you just stay on the surface, like all sorts of things we do in Hollywood, without realizing it you can move the consciousness of the country in a direction that’s not only dangerous but cruel.”

Foster’s speech last night went way deeper than the surface, and we commend her for it. But endorsing a man whose beliefs seem centered around stereotypes and cruelty was a weird way to punctuate that message.

 

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Comments

  1. MsW

    January 15, 2013 at 11:42 pm

    So, essentially what you’re saying is, you dont like Mel Gibson. Ah.

    Reply

  2. CranberryO

    January 16, 2013 at 5:19 am

    What homophobic and antisemitic coments are you talkng about lier??
    Mel Gibson never made any and if you can prove it then come along!!

    He was a ccused totaly unproven still, to have made almost antisemitic coments who were general and not directed at a police officer, in 2006, 7 years ago, while drunk, which was never proven thus the man made a video of the arrest who show mel Gibson being calm, and who didnt said a single word about jew, which is the total contrary of what was written in the DUI report by that officer, who had a bad reputation at the station since years, and who was at that time filed by his female colleagues for sexual harrassement, for calling them “sugar tits” regulary, just a week before he arrested Mel Gibson (ring a bell?)
    So whom do you beleive? that corrupt and untrustworthy arresting officer or Mel Gibson whos arrest video show that he never did nor said what he was accused of??

    At the time when the movie The Beaver was released, Mel Gibson had just past a long time on child custody triail, agaisnt a russian extortionist (the deputy and detectives own words) and golddigger, who blackmailed him with digiotal recordings of phone converfsations between them, dated form february 18, 2010, and containing soem outbursts form Mle Gibson.
    Those tapes were made while that russian womens complice , an audio engeneer was staying at her place overnight (how convenient) and the tape were doomed unacceptable in court by the police and the DA as they had been tampered with very heavily..

    Thats what scandale he was in the midst of in 2010-2011 dude, and it had nothing to do with any sexist or homophobic or antisemitic rants . so do your research before writing or shut up.

    as for your coments about jodies project, i do not see what you want to coem with are you mentaly impaired? if it was steven spielberg wanting to do it you will screem to the star how wonderfulla nd heroic it is of him ot do so!
    but cause jopdie foster is not jews so it means she is a nazist to want to od that, right?
    you are a deep racist and discriminator who judge people out of a scale who has 2 colors: you are jew or you are out!
    you are an hyoper racist and i dont see how you can be alowed to publish such a discriminatoric and lying article without getting fired by your editor!
    i do not live in USA, i live in eurfope and i found your way to look at the world with deeply suonistgic eyes, deeply outragous and choking!
    maybe you are so used to do so in USA that you dont even realise it anymore but i can tell you that for outside eyes what you just wrote is deeply scandalous AND UNETHICAL!!

    What on earth were you thinking about when you pened it?
    try to reread yourself
    cant you see the light?
    I wil expect that type of talking from a rigth extremist writer in a extremistic israelian paper, but not form a celeb mag on internet from USA!
    What you say is deep propaganda and stink of brainwash from miles away!
    arent you even aware of it?

    I feel the need to stress for you the fact that 1,7 milion non jews, mainly christians and communists and atheists, died in the concentration camps, but no stone was erected for them, no speech was ever made and no stgeven speilberg ever made a movie about them.
    Most of the comunists ended in a concentration camops before 1940 and they were the first to end up in extermination camps well before the jews, but nolbody ever talk of it why is that?
    ikts a terible discrimination agaisnt others to only focus on one gorup of victim of the same crime and not the others.
    all opposant to hitler and his politic were massacred, and according to Abraham Foxman, in his commemoration speech at Auchwitz KZ, they represent more than 50 % of the victims who died in the concentration camps.

    So meditate about it and consider how incredibly disgusting you are to faulsly accuse others of antisemitsme, when its oh so trendy to do so!

    Why dont you turn your eyes and brain on the real problems and real antisemitisme and attack those instead?

    Mel Gibson never said he dont like gays, on the contrary, he said in an interview 20 years ago that he wouldnt like to be gay himslef and take it in the ass.
    Do you?

    Most his friends are gay, his publicist is gay and jew, his agent is jew, most his friends are gay or jews or both.
    And almost all his employes at Icon Productions are jews.
    You didnt knew that?
    Get informed before talkign of subject you dont know a thing about.
    How can you say in the same sentence that Mel gibson is homopbhone and jodie foster’s best friend??
    it doenst disturb you to lie so much, does it??

    You have absolutly no evidences of the accusations you came with, and i therefor crave a dementi.

    If having a figth over the phone with someone that is blackmailing you means you are sexist then we are all sexists!

    The fact is that you are dead jealous over Jodie Foster and Mel Gibson and have a no life, and die of envy when you see them and try to go at your critc with a revenge to satisfy your lowest urges of jealousy.

    you are disgusting!

    Concerning your dubious comments on the passion of christ, martin scorcese made a movie 30 years befroe mel gibson about the same subject, in the 70′es, where he insulted the jews very directly but because he is jew nobody called him a nazist nor for his movie to be antisemite.
    and no cubs, on a fre day, felt the need to arrest him and accuse him of antisemitic tirade without a shred of prove to support that accusation.
    its call The last temptation of christ.

    I suggest you to rent both movies and wahtch them, and then decide which one is antiosemitc or contain anything that you will consider to be antisemite.

    I watched you so call commentator or journalists caling that movie form mel gibson for antisemite and then confessing in the same article that you had never watched it because… it is antisemite! (!!) a bigger pardon!??

    Youl have to come a long way to found something that is a worse prejudice than that.
    But none of thos guys seems to see the inner conrtradiction of their rabish talk.

    I wil advise you to talk with a rabbi about your problem and get it solved.
    or to have a tête á tête with doctor Finkelstein about the subject.

    You know whats worse than a racist?
    A Super racist who complains about discrimination against himself by discriminating others!!
    Like extreeme rigth and neo nazists, and like you in this article.

    You have in common with them that not only your words are chocking and very discriminating, and full of prejudices and unproven accusations agaisnt the people you wish to discriminate, but that you also use lies and defamation to “prove” your point.

    And no, I have to inform you that headlines from radar online do not constitute a prove nor a fact.
    Specialy when those articles and headlines were manufactured by the same poisonous guy who was fired from the national enquier, where he previously worked as editor, for being too unethical and out of line for their taste..

    Reply

  3. Bazza

    October 12, 2013 at 2:10 am

    I’m a hebrew but I like Mel Gibson – it seems like he’s close friends with Robert Downey Jr. and Jodie Foster. A jewish man and a lesbian. Seems like he’s not as bad as his drunken raving has ked us to believe.

    Reply