'He's still nonexistent': Internet divided as Mel Gibson thanks Robert Downey Jr for standing by him after his scandalous 2006 arrest

'He's still nonexistent': Internet divided as Mel Gibson thanks Robert Downey Jr for standing by him after his scandalous 2006 arrest
Mel Gibson reflected on his friendship with Robert Downey Jr recently (Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: In a recent Esquire profile of Robert Downey Jr, Mel Gibson expressed his gratitude toward his friend and former co-star for standing by him during a challenging time in his career.

Gibson reflected on a pivotal moment when Downey came to his defense following the former 2006 arrest in Malibu, which led to significant backlash and a temporary halt in his Hollywood career.

Mel Gibson grateful to Robert Downey Jr for support during controversy

Robert Downey Jr. attends the premiere of Columbia Pictures'
Mel Gibson expressed his appreciation for Robert Downey Jr's unwavering support to him during a difficult period in his life (Getty Images)

Gibson recounted the moment and said, "One time, I got into a bit of a sticky situation where it kind of ended my career. I was drunk in the back of a police car and I said some stupid s---, and all of a sudden: blacklisted. I'm the poster boy for canceled."

This references Gibson's infamous DUI arrest, during which he allegedly made antisemitic remarks, leading to widespread condemnation and professional repercussions, TMZ reported.

Braveheart actor and filmmaker was referring to his arrest for DUI during which, according to a police report, "Gibson blurted out a barrage of antisemitic remarks about '(profanity redacted) Jews.' Gibson yelled out, 'The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world.' Gibson then asked, 'Are you a Jew?'"

Despite the controversy, Gibson expressed his appreciation for Downey's unwavering support.

"A couple of years into that he invited me to some kind of award he was getting — we always had this kind of seesaw thing, where if he was on the wagon, I was falling off, and if I was on the wagon, he was falling off," Gibson said.

"So I was pretty much nonexistent in Hollywood at the time, and he stood up and spoke for me. It was a bold and generous and kind gesture. I loved him for that," he added.

Following years of substance abuse issues and legal troubles, Downey thanked Gibson at the 25th American Cinematheque Awards in 2011.

"I asked Mel to present this award for me for a reason," he said. "When I couldn't get sober, he told me not to give up hope and encouraged me to find my faith. It didn't have to be his or anyone else's, as long as it was rooted in forgiveness. And I couldn't get hired, so he cast me in the lead of a movie that was actually developed for him."

Downey continued, "All he asked in return was that someday I help the next guy in some small way. It's reasonable to assume at the time he didn't imagine the next guy would be him or that someday was tonight. So anyway, on this special occasion and in light of the recent holidays, including Columbus Day, I would ask that you join me, unless you are completely without sin, in which case you picked the wrong f---ing industry, in forgiving my friend his trespasses and offering him the same clean slate you have me, allowing him to continue his great and ongoing contribution to our collective art without shame."

Despite the setbacks Gibson faced following his arrest, he eventually returned to filmmaking, with notable projects including 'Edge of Darkness' in 2010 and 'Hacksaw Ridge' which received critical acclaim and multiple Academy Award nominations in 2017.

Gibson's upcoming directorial venture, 'Flight Risk', starring Mark Wahlberg, and a sequel to 'The Passion of the Christ' are indicative of his continued contributions to the film industry.

Internet divided as Mel Gibson thanks Robert Downey Jr

Actor/filmmaker Mel Gibson attends The 22nd Annual Critics' Choice Awards at Barker Hangar on December 11, 2016 in Santa Monica, California.
Mel Gibson thanked Robert Downey Jr for supporting him during a challenging period of his life (Getty Images)

Mel Gibson's expression of gratitude toward Robert Downey Jr for standing by him during a difficult period has sparked varied reactions online.

One user expressed strong support for Gibson, stating, "Mel is the best !!!!" 

However, not all responses were positive. Another user brought up Gibson's past controversies, stating, "I can never look at Mel again after him freaking out on that woman."

A different user drew a distinction between Gibson's struggles with substance abuse and allegations of abuse toward women, commenting, "Being a drug addict is far different from being someone who is a confirmed woman abuser."

Furthermore, one user juxtaposed Gibson's past actions with broader issues in Hollywood, remarking, "Mel Gibson did and said some stupid s**t at that time. But people acting like he was the worst thing in Hollywood while it still protects and harbors rapists and child molesters is f**king hilarious." 

One person wrote on X, "The loyalty robert downey jnr and jodie foster showed to a friend is something we dont see today they could have easily been cancelled for backing mel but loyalty and friendship was more important to them."


Another said, "Two greats. Excited for Mel Gibson’s next directorial features. Hopefully Downey can star in one someday."


One individual tweeted, "He's still nonexistent," while another said, "White power." One person wrote, "They own hollywood. he's no smart."




This article contains remarks made on the Internet by individual people and organizations. MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and does not support claims or opinions being made online.

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