Belfast Telegraph

Foster grateful for Gibson role

Jodie Foster has attended the premiere of her movie The Beaver at the South by Southwest Film Festival, and said she's grateful for the performance in it by troubled actor and friend Mel Gibson.

The quirky but dark film follows a depressed toy company executive who picks up a beaver hand puppet and uses it to separate himself from the negative aspects of his personality that are destroying his family and career.

Jodie directed the movie and plays Mel's wife.

"I can't imagine anybody else doing it. He has such a deep, struggling soul that really understood the part of the movie that's about a man in a spiritual crisis," Jodie said.

Mel, who was recently sentenced to 36 months of probation and ordered to attend 52 weeks of domestic violence counselling after pleading no contest to a charge of spousal battery on former girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva, did not attend the premiere.

Jodie, who has remained a steadfast friend of Mel, acknowledged the battery charge made release of the film tricky.

But she said she had no regrets about having Gibson in the movie.

"I feel incredibly grateful to have Mel's performance in this movie and I wouldn't change anything. For anybody who's ever worked with Mel Gibson, he's the most beloved actor probably in the film business, at least of the ones I've worked with," Jodie said.

"Obviously all sorts of stuff happened after the film finished that threw our release into a crazy pattern, but I certainly have no regrets about him being in the film or his performance."

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