Mel Gibson continually referred to Jews as “oven dodgers,” famed Hollywood screenwriter Joe Eszterhas said in a July 18, 2019, interview with Andrew Goldman of Los Angeles Magazine.
“I heard him use words like Hebes and oven dodgers and Jew boys,” Eszterhas said when asked how Gibson would refer to Jews.
Eszterhas, a Hungarian-born Christian, said that Gibson reached out to him in 2010 about writing a script for a movie about the Maccabees, the Jewish priests and warriors of the Chanukah story.
Though reluctant because of Gibson’s history of making anti-Semitic statements, Eszterhas agreed to collaborate with him.
“He said the reason he wanted to do the Maccabees is because it’s a story of Jewish independence and Jewish strength. And the way he was talking, I thought that he wanted to do it as a kind of apologia for the things he was being accused of,” Eszterhas said.
Instead, Eszterhas’ experiences working with Gibson were full of anti-Semitic tirades and terrifyingly violent outbursts. He claimed that Gibson told him, “What I really want to do with this movie is to convert the Jews to Christianity.”
Eszterhas said, “I think the basic point of this is that the man needs help. There’s an illness at the core. There’s a cancer at the core. I’m not a psychologist, but there’s something that’s very twisted at the core.”
He said, “My great fear with Mel is that unless somebody really helps him, he can either cause himself or others real damage. He needs help that way.”
The Maccabees project eventually fell apart, and Eszterhas recorded his version of events in a 2012 e-book titled “Heaven and Mel.”
Eszterhas’ statements back up actress Winona Ryder’s claim that Gibson called her an “oven dodger” at a party 25 years ago. Ryder spoke about the incident multiple times, most recently in a June 21 interview with the London-based Sunday Times.
“This is 100 percent untrue,” a representative for Gibson said in a statement to Variety on June 23. “She lied about it over a decade ago, when she talked to the press, and she’s lying about it now.”
Ryder’s father is Jewish, and many of her relatives on his side of the family were murdered in the Holocaust. (World Israel News)
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