Mel Gibson is still looking to put his 2006 drunk driving incident behind him, but -- as he puts it -- people keep bringing it up.
“Others bring it up, which kind of I find annoying, because I don’t understand why after 10 years it’s any kind of issue,” Gibson said. “Ten years have gone by. I’m feeling good. I’m sober, all of that kind of stuff, and for me it’s a dim thing in the past.”
Gibson was being interviewed for Variety’s “Playback” podcast, ostensibly to discuss his new World War II film, “Hacksaw Ridge.” But conversation quickly turned to the 2006 incident, during which the Oscar winner was picked up for driving while in intoxicated in Malibu, California, and was subsequently recorded making disparaging remarks toward a female officer and saying things like, “The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world.”
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During the podcast, Gibson acknowledged that he’d previously apologized for the incident, and he argued that he should be judged on his actions, not his words.
“Surely if I was really what they say I was, some kind of hater, there’d be evidence of actions somewhere. There never has been,” he said. “I’ve never discriminated against anyone or done anything that sort of supports that reputation.”
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“And for one episode in the back of a police car on eight double tequilas to sort of dictate all the work -- life’s work and beliefs and everything else that I have and maintain for my life -- is really unfair.”
Of course, while Gibson would prefer everyone put the incident behind them, he did still have some points of contention about how his arrest was handled.
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“It was an unfortunate incident,” he said. “I was loaded and angry and arrested. I was recorded illegally by an unscrupulous police officer who was never prosecuted for that crime. And then it was made public by him for profit, and by members of -- we’ll call it the press. So, not fair. I guess as who I am, I’m not allowed to have a nervous breakdown, ever.”
(Originally published by CBS News on Monday, October 24, 2016 at 11:42 pm ET)