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Posts tagged ‘Mike Tyson’

Plea to Take Mel Gibson Off ‘Blacklist’ Sparks Hollywood Debate.


Image: Plea to Take Mel Gibson Off 'Blacklist' Sparks Hollywood Debate

Eight years after Mel Gibson’s anti-Semitic rant during a drunk-driving arrest, Hollywood is debating the rehabilitation of an Oscar winner who was once one of the industry’s most bankable stars.

The heated discussion was sparked by a March 12 opinion piece in Deadline Hollywood by Allison Hope Weiner, a freelance writer who covered Gibson’s infamous spiral out of favor and now considers him a friend. Her appeal for an end to what she called a “quiet blacklisting” has generated more than 5,700 comments on Yahoo.com’s movie page and more than 800 on the Deadline Hollywood site, which is read by many in the industry.

“He has been in the doghouse long enough,” Weiner wrote. “It’s time to give the guy another chance.”

Gibson’s movies, from “Mad Max” to “Braveheart” and “Apocalypto,” have grossed $3.6 billion, according to Rentrak Corp., providing an incentive for studios and agencies to consider absolution. His particular transgressions, and the number of them over the years, mean it’s unlikely to come easy.

Forgiving Gibson “is not the same thing as forgiving Lindsay Lohan for partying too late,” said Elizabeth Currid- Halkett, author of “Starstruck: The Business of Celebrity” and an associate professor at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. “Anti-Semitism is not just behaving badly.”

While the 58-year-old still directs and acts — he recently completed production as a co-star with Sylvester Stallone on “Expendables 3” — major studios “are either wary of him or prefer not to work with him,” said Michael Fleming, Deadline Hollywood’s film editor. “I am surprised this has lasted this long. The guy has made a lot of people a lot of money.”

Malibu Tirade

The back-and-forth by commentators on Weiner’s piece boils down to a bygone question in Hollywood: whether what someone says or does off screen, however repugnant, should have any effect on his fitness to make movies.

Gibson is a long-running case in point. The hits to his reputation aren’t limited to those from his tirade about Jews being “responsible for all the wars in the world,” delivered as he was arrested in 2006 in Malibu, California. In 2010, audiotapes of threats he made to his then-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva — laced with racial epithets — surfaced. The next year he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor battery charge after a dispute with Grigorieva, the mother of his youngest child.

In 2004, he came under fire for what the Anti-Defamation League and others saw as anti-Semitism in “The Passion of the Christ,” a blockbuster he directed, co-produced and co-wrote. He reacted to a Frank Rich column about it in the New York Times by telling the New Yorker, “I want to kill him. I want his intestines on a stick. I want to kill his dog.”

‘Harmful Words’

In 1992 he offended the gay community with remarks in a Spanish newspaper interview and later told Playboy that he would apologize “when hell freezes over.”

He did apologize after his Malibu arrest for what he said were his “vitriolic and harmful words,” and after pleading no contest to a misdemeanor drunk-driving charge was sentenced to three years’ probation.

Alan Nierob, a Rogers & Cowan publicist who represents Gibson, said his client should be allowed back in the fold. “People should know that he is now healthy once again, both physically and mentally after suffering a breakdown,” Nierob said. “He is an artistic genius, and the industry should benefit once again from his enormous talent.”

‘Harsh Language’

Weiner, describing herself as an observant Jew, said in Deadline Hollywood that Gibson today “is clearly a different man, one who has worked on his sobriety since that awful night in Malibu.” And the movie industry, she said, is hypocritical, willing to “work with others who’ve committed felonies and done things far more serious than Gibson.”

She cited Mike Tyson, a convicted rapist who has been in the “Hangover” films. Gibson was dropped from a cameo in “The Hangover Part II” in 2010 after “a lot of people” working on the film protested, Todd Phillips told the Hollywood Reporter.

“Gibson has been shunned not for doing anything criminal; his greatest offenses amount to use of harsh language,” Weiner wrote in her more than 3,400-word piece. She said she chose to publish it on the 10th anniversary of “The Passion of the Christ,” which she described as “about an innocent man’s willingness to forgive the greatest injustice.”

The independent release grossed $612 million at the global box office, and Gibson personally made $210 million in 2004, according to Forbes. His fortune was estimated at $850 million by the Los Angeles Business Journal, and People magazine reported that his 2011 divorce halved that.

Befriending Rabbis

In recent years, Weiner said, Gibson has befriended rabbis, attended Passover Seders and donated to Jewish causes. He invited to coffee the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy who took him into custody in Malibu. He was at Weiner’s son’s bar mitzvah, where she said he charmed her family.

“My friendship with Gibson made me reconsider other celebrities whose public images became tarnished by the media’s rush to judge,” Weiner wrote. “Whether it’s Gibson, Tom Cruise or Alec Baldwin, the descent from media darling to pariah can happen quickly after they do something dumb.”

Hollywood is littered with stars who fell from grace — Charlie Sheen after a rant against the producer of “Two and a Half Men,” Robert Downey Jr. after arrests for illegal drug use, Cruise after jumping on Oprah’s couch and admonishing Brooks Shields for treating her postpartum depression with pharmaceuticals — and who bounced back.

Two Oscars

Downey, Gibson’s co-star in “Air America” in 1990, has been among his staunch defenders. He asked that Gibson be on stage to present him with a life-achievement award from American Cinematheque in 2011, and said in his acceptance speech that his friend deserved from Hollywood the same forgiveness it had afforded him. Gibson had helped revive Downey’s career when he was considered uninsurable by paying his insurance bond for 2003’s “The Singing Detective.”

Gibson rose to international fame with the “Mad Max” and “Lethal Weapon” films and won Oscars in 1995 for best picture and best director for “Braveheart,” in which he also starred. He garnered acclaim for “Apocalypto,” about the end of Mayan civilization, which he financed through his Icon Productions LLC; Walt Disney Co. distributed it.

Released five months after the Malibu arrest, it did well at the box office. “Say what you will about him — about his problem with booze or his problem with Jews — he is a serious filmmaker,” wrote New York Times critic A.O. Scott.

Bypassing Theaters

One of Gibson’s big hits as an actor before Malibu was “Signs,” a 2002 thriller by M. Night Shyamalan that grossed $228 million. One of his biggest flops ever was “The Beaver” in 2011 with Jodie Foster, which made less than $1 million in U.S. theaters, according to the Internet Movie Database.

He bypassed theaters with “Get the Gringo” in 2012, releasing it instead on pay-television. Last year he was a co- star with Sheen in “Machete Kills,” which wasn’t a critical or commercial success.

In Hollywood, “there are some who may forgive and some who never will,” said Michael Sitrick, chairman and chief executive of Sitrick Brincko Group LLC, a Los Angeles-based public relations and crisis-management firm that has represented rapper Chris Brown, baseball player Alex Rodriguez and socialite Paris Hilton. “It’s not about spin. It has to be genuine.”
© Copyright 2014 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

Source: Newsmax.com

Mike Tyson: ‘Horrible’ Obamacare Doesn’t Work.


President Barack Obama has lost standing in the office after promising people they could keep their health care plans and doctors, former heavyweight boxing champ Mike Tyson says.

I don’t know what it takes to become a president,” Tyson said Wednesday on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Live.” 

“I don’t know how many butts, or how much of a brown-noser you’ve got to be to be a president.”

Still, Tyson said, Obama is a role model as an African-American man leading the free world. It allows young black men to see something they can aspire to, he said.

Tyson said he was a big fan of the Affordable Care Act, but the troubled rollout has left him less than impressed. In addition to the broken promises, the website for signing up, which was supposed to go online Oct. 1, is still plagued with glitches.

“It just really went horrible, didn’t it?” Tyson said. “It’s really bad.

“I was for it 100 percent,” Tyson told Morgan, “but we have to come to the reality that it didn’t work.”

Morgan noted that many African-American guests on his show have complained that Obama, the nation’s first black president, hasn’t done enough for the black community.

Tyson said the problems of black America are not solely the responsibility of the president.

“We’ve got to conduct ourselves as respectable African-Americans,” he said, citing young black men playing the so-called “Knockout Game” in which innocent people are attacked on the street.

No other president before Obama has cared only about the black population, Tyson noted. “And I don’t think that’s ever going to happen.”

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Greg Richter

Bill Cosby on George Zimmerman: Guns, not race, real issue in Trayvon Martin case.


Bill Cosby, the latest in a string of celebrities asked to publicly weigh in on the Trayvon Martin case, said the biggest issue in the 17-year-old’s killing at the hands of 28-year-old neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman is not race–it’s guns.

“I believe that when you tell me that you’re going to protect the neighborhood that I live in, I don’t want you to have a gun,” Cosby, 74, said in an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union” broadcast on Sunday. “I want you to be able to see something, report it, and get out of the way, because you happen to be a part of the neighborhood. I don’t want you to get hurt. And I don’t want you to hurt anyone.”

Via CNN’s transcript:

Candy Crowley: So you saw more a gun issue than a race issue?

Cosby: How are you going to solve a race issue when it becomes he said, she said or he said, he said?  And the other question is, what is solved by saying he’s a racist that’s why he shot the boy?  What solves that? This. [Makes gun symbol with hand] And what is he doing with it?  And who taught him and told him how to behave with this?  It doesn’t make any difference if he’s a racist or not racist.  If he’s scared to death and not a racist, it’s still a confrontational provoking of something.

I don’t know what happened, but I know that this — I used to have a gun.  The policeman who okayed it said to me, “Mr. Cosby, when you pull this trigger, you can’t call it back.”  And so I had the gun in my pocket. And the reason why I had it was to protect my family.  But I also knew that anything that went on outside–and it appeared to be something that wasn’t on the OK, I went out with my gun.  And the thought was if this person is not right or if that doesn’t move when I say move, I’m going to show that I have a gun.

Cosby’s comments about the case were just a bit more nuanced than those of fellow comedian Bill Maher, who used the shooting as fodder for his “Real Time” monologue on Friday.

“Can tell it’s a crazy crowd tonight because it’s raining out there and also it’s Friday the 13th,” Maher said. “Remember: If a black cat crosses your path, it is bad luck–except in Florida where you’re allowed to shoot it.”

Last week, Mike Tyson told Yahoo News that he would be in favor of vigilante justice against Zimmerman.

“That’s the only kind of retribution that people like that understand,” Tyson said. “Forget about him being arrested, the fact that he hasn’t been shot yet is a disgrace.”

Source: YAHOO NEWS.

By Dylan Stableford | The Cutline 

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