No stranger to controversy, Mel Gibson is involved in another one that exploded this week. This time he’s battling it out with famed Hollywood screenwriter Joe Eszterhas — a controversial figure in his own right.
The latest fracas, reported by TheWrap.com, has Eszterhas renewing accusations of anti-Semitism by Gibson in a letter to Gibson. The two men were reportedly working together on “The Maccabees,” a movie project for Warner Bros., when their collaboration broke down. Eszterhas blames Gibson’s alleged anti-Semitism for the breakdown, with Gibson attributing it to a bad script by Eszterhas.
TheWrap reports: “Gibson said on Wednesday that an explosive letter from Eszterhas was ‘utter fabrication’ in its ‘great majority.’ In the letter, the writer described the movie star in the grip of an anti-Semitic obsession, inflicting frequent rages on those around him and threatening to kill his ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva.”
Eszterhas responded to Gibson’s claims in an exclusive interview, the story reports, saying, “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.” Eszterhas, his wife, Naomi, and his son were with Gibson at Gibson’s villa in Costa Rica late last year, the story notes.
Eszterhas adds: “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.”
Eszterhas is known for his writing work on a string of films — not always critically acclaimed — including “Basic Instinct” and “Showgirls.” He is also known for producing the spectacular 1997 flop “An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn.”