Photo Credit: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images; Chelsea Lauren/WireImage
Mel Gibson isn't exactly the most popular guy in Hollywood right now, but Jodie Foster still considers him a friend -- no matter what. In an interview for October's More Magazine, Foster, 47, says she doesn't plan on ostracizing Gibson for his behavior toward ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva.
"When you love a friend, you don't abandon them when they are struggling," she tells the magazine.
Foster has a personal stake in Gibson's recovery: she recently directed him in the dark comedy The Beaver, about a CEO who has a nervous breakdown and begins talking through a beaver puppet. With unstable Gibson in the lead, the film's theme of mental illness has taken on an unfortunate real-life relevance; there's even talk that the movie will never reach theaters. But Foster believes very strongly in both the film and its star.
"Mel is an undeniably gifted actor and director, and The Beaver is one of his most powerful and moving performances," says the actress-director. "But more importantly, he is and has been a true and loyal friend. I hope I can help him get through this dark moment."
Although Mel Gibson's rants on those now-infamous tapes are downright scary, we appreciate that Foster isn't making excuses for her friend. Unlike Whoopi Goldberg, who tried to argue on The View that Gibson hadn't done anything wrong, Foster seems aware that Gibson (who's been close to her since they co-starred in 1994's Maverick) isn't blameless. It's hard to fault her for wanting to "help him get through this dark moment."
On the other hand, it's hard for celebrity-watchers like us to reconcile the Mel Gibson everybody loves so much (the "nicest person I've ever worked with," says Foster) with the Mel Gibson who threatened to kill his girlfriend for no apparent reason. How can two such vastly different personalities exist in the same man? Maybe the problem is alcohol, or maybe it is, in fact, mental illness. We don't know -- but it sounds like maybe Jodie Foster does.
Why do you think celebrities like Jodie Foster are defending Mel Gibson? Chime in below!