Belfast Telegraph

Jodie: Mel is most beloved actor

Jodie Foster thinks Mel Gibson is still "the most beloved actor" in Hollywood despite all the recent scandals.

Jodie stuck by Mel when he was reported to have made anti-Semitic and sexist slurs in 2006 and she's still speaking out for him now that he's pleaded no contest after being charged with a fight he had with his then-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva.

"I'm not defending his behavior," she said. "I'm defending the man that I know. And I know he's kind and loyal and is an incredible professional. He's probably the most beloved actor of anybody I've ever worked with in the film business. And I don't say that lightly."

Jodie, who first co-starred with Mel in Maverick in 1994, finds it strange that she's been criticized for being loyal to him.

"When somebody's struggling, you don't run away from them, you love them and you stand close to them."

She says the difference between Mel and anyone else who's experienced pain is that Mel's troubles were made public.

She said: "As I said to him before, I don't mind seeing you in your underwear, but I'm not interested in seeing your underwear against your will. A lot of mistakes that people make, that we've all made - which, by the way, I don't think are as unusual as people might think - aren't usually played out [on the news]."

Jodie plays Mel's wife in the upcoming film The Beaver, a film she also directed. It's about a depressed man who can only speak to his family and co-workers through a beaver puppet he wears on his left hand.

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