Even during the worst of Mel Gibson's scandals last year, one Hollywood friend stayed fiercely in his corner. Jodie Foster has been bafflingly loyal to Gibson, referring to him as an incredible friend who was just going through a difficult time.
She went so far as to say he was still well regarded in the movie business, despite his little rough patch: "He is truly the most loved man in the film business, so hopefully that stands for something."
(Not a member of the We Love Mel club: Winona Ryder, to whom Gibson made a drunken reference to "oven dodgers" when he learned she was Jewish.)
Now that The Beaver has been released, which stars Gibson and Foster, Foster has gone into overdrive when it comes to defending him. She told The Hollywood Reporter,
He's so incredibly loving and sensitive, he really is. He is the most loved actor I have ever worked with on a movie. And he's not saintly, and he's got a big mouth, and he'll do gross things your nephew would do. But I knew the minute I met him that I would love him the rest of my life.
Ha ha, that silly Mel! So gross yet lovable, just like a little kid. I mean, those anti-Semitic remarks he made to a cop after he was arrested for drunk driving, the audio tapes in which he acts violently insane and drops racial slurs left and right, his no contest plea to beating the crap out of his one-time girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva: ADORABLE!
Foster doesn't think you should avoid seeing the movie because of a little thing like being horrified by its star:
The performance he gave in this movie, I will always be grateful for. He brought a lifetime of pain to the character that we've been talking about for years, that I knew was part of his psyche and who he is. It's part of him that is beautiful and that I want people to know too. I can't ever regret that.
How heartwarming that Jodie Foster, who directed and co-starred in The Beaver and thus has a nontrivial stake in its success, doesn't regret anything Mel Gibson has done lately, and in fact believes his reprehensible behavior has made him a more beautiful person. Her glowing words really make me want to see this movie, which is about a man whose beaver hand puppet becomes his "best friend and worst enemy."
Actually ... wait, Jodie. I think I'm getting a message from the beaver. It's telling me to keep my ticket money and donate it to Japan instead. Sorry, the beaver can't be denied. The beautiful magic you and Mel created is just that powerful.
Image via The Beaver