Entries in Anti-Semitism (4)


Mel Gibson Blasted for Maccabee Biopic

Mike Marsland/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) -- Mel Gibson has found himself in a flurry of criticism and jokes since news broke late Thursday that he’s partnering to write the biopic of Jewish warrior Judah Maccabee.

The American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors and Descendants said “holocaust survivors are aghast” about the potential film, while the Anti-Defamation League proclaimed that Gibson’s telling of Judah’s story would be a “travesty.”

Even comedian and View co-host Joy Behar weighed in on Twitter saying, “Mel Gibson is making a film about the life of Judah Maccabee. I’m smelling a Seder invite!”

Gibson is notorious for his 2006 anti-Semitic comments made during a Malibu DUI arrest that caused a world-wide uproar.         

“People remember what he did and if he wants them to forget, he needs to embark on a different course,” said Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, adding that if Gibson wants to correct his past wrongs, he should spend time taking courses on Judaism or visiting concentration camps, not creating films about the hero of the Hanukkah commemoration.

Hier said he read the news online at home this morning and was so shocked he didn’t believe it could be true. He compared Gibson’s involvement in the film to having “a white supremacist portray Martin Luther King Jr.”

Gibson will team with screenwriter Joe Eszterhas (best known for Flashdance and Basic Instinct) to write the script, which is in the early stages of a development deal with Warner Bros. Gibson’s Icon Productions will produce the film and he will have the first opportunity to direct the film if he chooses, according to Gibson publicist Alan Nierob.

Warner Bros. declined to comment, saying the film was in the early stages of production.

Gibson remained quiet on the subject, but The Atlantic has dug up his comments on Maccabee from a few years ago.

Gibson was in the news last week when he finalized a $750,000 settlement with ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva. Their relationship was known for Gibson’s disparaging rant that was leaked to a celebrity news site, in which he said Grigorieva deserved it when he hit her in the face.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mel Gibson Working on Film about Jewish Warrior

Mike Marsland/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) -- This may come as a surprise, but Mel Gibson is working on a film about a Jewish warrior. reports that Gibson, who famously made anti-Semitic remarks during a DUI arrest in Malibu, California five years ago, is collaborating with Flashdance and Basic Instinct writer Joe Eszterhas on a drama based on the life of Judah Maccabee, who led a Jewish revolt against the Greek-Syrian armies in the second century B.C.

The Los Angeles Times reports Gibson could choose to direct the film once the script is completed.  There's also a chance he could have an acting role in the movie.

The Anti-Defamation League, which fights anti-Semitism, objects to Gibson's involvement in the film.

The organization's national director, Abraham Foxman, issued the following statement to The Hollywood Reporter: "Judah Maccabee deserves better.  He is a hero of the Jewish people and a universal hero in the struggle for religious liberty.  It would be a travesty to have his story told by one who has no respect and sensitivity for other people’s religious views."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Russell Crowe Apologizes for Twitter Rant Against "Barbaric" Circumcision

Fotonoticias/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Celebrity Twitter rants are as old as the microblogging service itself, but Oscar winner Russell Crowe kicked off an unlikely feud Friday -- with the supporters and practitioners of circumcision. After calling the practice "barbaric," Crowe, a father of two sons, soon began fielding a furious response of tweets both supporting and opposing his position.

The always-outspoken Crowe kicked the hornet's nest first by tweeting "...if u feel it is yr right 2 cut things off yr babies please unfollow and f**k off, I'll take attentive parenting over barbarism," giving little regard to the religious and scientific support of the practice. "[I have] many Jewish friends," Crowe tweeted. "I love my Jewish friends, I love the apples and the honey and the funny little hats, but stop cutting yr babies," he posted to actor/director Eli Roth, with whom Crowe worked on The Man with the Iron Fists.

Later on, as "lazy journalists" -- as he called them -- got wind of the comments, Crowe softened, saying he couldn't "apologize for [his] heartfelt beliefs." But he soon did just that, stating that his comments shouldn't be taken as a criticism of Jews or any other group that practices circumcision for religious reasons. "I have a deep and abiding love for people of all faiths," Crowe backpedaled, before tweeting two separate mea culpas. "I am very sorry I have said things on here that have caused distress," he posted, following it with, "My personal beliefs aside, I realize that some will interpret this debate as me mocking the rituals and traditions of others. I am very sorry."

At least one of Crowe's Jewish friends didn't take the comments too harshly. Roth, who starred in Inglorious Basterds and is currently editing Crowe's Iron Fists, snarkily responded to Crowe's "cutting yr babies" comment by tweeting back "You didn't seem to be complaining when I was re-cutting you this afternoon."

To try to put out the fire for those not on Twitter, Crowe issued an official statement through his publicists Friday afternoon. "I am deeply sorry for the insensitive comments I made on twitter this morning," the press release said. "Like everyone, I have my own strong opinions, but in attempting to state and argue them through humor, I insulted the traditions and beliefs of others.  That was not my intention, but it is my fault.  I have a deep and abiding love for all people and all cultures, and I am deeply sorry for any distress I have caused by my insensitive remarks."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Sheen Releases Explosive Letter Responding to Show Cancellation

Photo Courtesy - ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Following a disastrous Thursday radio interview that resulted in the further suspension of his TV show, Charlie Sheen released an open letter berating the show's creator with foul language and insults.

CBS announced late Thursday it has ended production of the hit comedy Two and a Half Men for the season. 

The move came after the show's star Charlie Sheen's took to the air waves to slam Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre in a rambling, erratic interview on the syndicated radio show The Alex Jones Show.

"Based on the totality of Charlie Sheen's statements, conduct and condition, CBS and Warner Bros. Television have decided to discontinue production of Two and a Half Men for the remainder of the season," CBS Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television said in a statement. The show has been in hiatus since January, when Sheen began rehab following erratic behavior.

Following the CBS announcement, Sheen addressed the issue in an open letter obtained by

"What does this say about [Lorre] after he tried to use his words to judge and attempt to degrade me. I gracefully ignored this folly for 177 shows," Sheen writes. "I fire back once and this contaminated little maggot can't handle my power and can't handle the truth.

"I wish him nothing but pain in his silly travels especially if they wind up in my octagon. Clearly I have defeated this earthworm with my words -- imagine what I would have done with my fire breathing fists. I urge all my beautiful and loyal fans who embraced this show for almost a decade to walk with me side-by-side as we march up the steps of justice to right this unconscionable wrong."

Later, Sheen apparently challenged Lorrie to a fight. According to the website TMZ, Sheen said, "if he wins, then he can leave MY show." Sheen told TMZ, " I violently hate [Lorre]. He's a stupid, stupid little man and a p***y punk that I'd never want to be like."

Sheen told TMZ all wants to do is bring his family together. "That piece of s**t [Lorre] took money out of my pocket, my family's pocket and most importantly, my second family-my crew's pocket."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio