Maccabees Screenwriter Claims Mel Gibson "Hates Jews," Planned To Have Ex-Girlfriend Killed
Here we go again: Mel Gibson has been accused of "hating Jews" by screenwriter Joe Eszterhas in a letter obtained by The Wrap.
Eszterhas had been working with Gibson on a script for The Maccabees, a film about Jewish hero Judah Maccabee. Warner Bros. has reportedly shelved the project, which Eszterhas alleges Gibson only wants to make in an "attempt to deflect continuing charges of anti-Semitism, which have dogged you, charges which have crippled your career." (Gibson first created waves in 2006 when he went on an anti-Semitic rant during a traffic stop.)
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"I've come to the conclusion that the reason you won't make The Maccabees is the ugliest possible one. You hate Jews," Eszterhaus continued.
In the nine-page letter, Eszterhas also alleges that Gibson has, on several occasions, threatened his ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva's life. "And then you were even more explicit about your threat: 'I'm going to kill her! I'm going to have her killed!' You said you'd become friends with two FBI agents (or former FBI agents) and they were going to help you to kill her."
Eszterhas' claim comes almost two years after audio tapes of Gibson's explosive phone conversations with Grigorieva were leaked. Gibson eventually reached a settlement with Grigorieva in August 2011, when he agreed to pay $750,000 and split legal custody of their daughter, Luci.
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Gibson, in his own letter obtained by Deadline.com, doesn't respond to the specifics of Eszterhas' letter, but the actor claims the many of the accusations are "utter fabrications." Gibson goes on to say that Eszterhas is releasing this letter now because Gibson and Warner Bros. rejected the Basic Instinct writer's script for The Maccabees.
"Both Warner Brothers and I were extraordinarily disappointed with the draft," Gibson wrote. "In 25 years of script development I have never seen a more substandard first draft or a more significant waste of time. The decision not to proceed with you was based on the quality of your script, not on any other factor."
Eszterhas' letter, in its entirety, can be found here. (WARNING: It contains language that some may find offensive. Click at your own risk.)