Mel Gibson then and now has received six Oscar nominations after 10 years of stagnating career in Hollywood thanks to the returned with the movie “Hacksaw Ridge”.

The day the US Academy announced the 89th Oscar (January 24, 2017) was a special day for Mel Gibson. The 61-year-old man just welcomed his ninth son. At that time, his war work Hacksaw Ridge, which he directed, received six Oscar nominations, including the important categories “Best Film” and “Best Director”.

Gibson expressed his happiness in the press release: “What could be better than hearing announcing Oscar nominations while I was carrying my newly born son.” Hollywood media reported at the same time: “Mel Gibson is really back.” He was at the height of his fame before spending a decade ignored by Hollywood. Therefore, he might appreciate this recognition more than anyone else.

At the peak of fame

The 1980s and 1990s were the golden age of Mel Gibson as an actor. He was considered the most outstanding representative of the “New wave from Australia” movement. Born in the United States, from the age of 12, Mel Gibson settled with his family in Australia.

With a tall and masculine appearance, Gibson was compared to many screen legends. A writer for the New York Times in 1980 said: “Gibson reminds me of a young Steve McQueen. I don’t know the definition of  “star quality” in detail. But Mel Gibson certainly has that quality.” Meanwhile, Time put Gibson next to past superstars like Cary Grant or Sean Connery.

In 1979, Gibson played the main role of crazy Max in the movie having the invention of about 400 thousand AUD is Mad Max. The work of director George Miller was successful beyond expectations with a worldwide total of more than $ 100 million.

According to Guinness statistics, this was the most profitable film in the world from 1980 to 1999. Mad Max paved the way for the next two sections: Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) and Beyond Thunderdome (1985). They succeeded and elevated Mel Gibson into a star.

In addition to Mad Max, another series associated with the Mel Gibson brand was Lethal Weapon. In this comedy-action series, Gibson played the main role of a police officer. It lasted four parts from 1987 to 1998, with a total turnover of $ 955 million. In the mid-1980s, not only was a movie superstar, but Gibson also emerged as a “sex symbol”. In 1985, he got an honor to become the first “sexiest man on the planet” by People magazine.

Mel Gibson Then and Now: After 10 Years being Ignore by Hollywood


In 2004, he was a producer, co-writer, and director of the controversial religious movie The Passion of the Christ. It earned $ 612 million in revenue to become the most popular non-English-speaking movie in history. At the same time, the movie received three Oscar nominations.
Two years later,  Gibson directed the movie Apolcalypto. It also received a lot of praise. Gibson himself did not expect that it was his last peak before a dark decade.

Collapsed and stood up

Despite his talent, Gibson also had bad habits. He revealed that he drank alcohol at the age of 13. During his time as an actor, he had many times involved in the scandal due to drinking alcohol or making vulgar comments about gay people.

The biggest scandal of Gibson’s career occurred on July 28, 2006, when he was stopped by a policeman on the streets of California at night. Due to the availability of alcohol in his body, when prohibited to continue driving, Gibson could not control. He insulted the police and made comments that offended the Jewish community.

TMZ quickly spread the police report on Mel Gibson’s status and sensitive words. Although Mel Gibson publicly apologized and actively asked to meet representatives of the Jewish community in the US, he was in the “blacklist” by Hollywood.

In mid-August 2006, his wife decided to separate because she could not stand her husband’s habit of abusing alcohol. She filed for divorce in March 2009 after the press published intimate photos of Mel Gibson with his lover. In 2011, the divorce reached completion. According to People, Gibson had to pay more than $ 400 million to his ex-wife – a record in Hollywood.

Losing his wife who had been with him since the early days of his career, Mel Gibson’s career continued declining. Since 2006, Gibson has only participated in six films. None of them had the investor from major studios.

Jodie Foster, a friend of Gibson, tried to help the actor by inviting him to participate in the movie The Beaver in 2011. However, the work sank. Superstar Robert Downey Jr. was a close friend of Gibson, so he wanted to help him. But Robert’s proposal to Marvel to lead Mel Gibson to direct an Iron Man episode got a rejection. 

Mel Gibson Then and Now: After 10 Years being Ignore by Hollywood

The turning point came in 2016 when Mel Gibson directed the war movie Hacksaw Ridge. This work was about the soldier Desmond T. Doss (Andrew Garfield) who got the award of the American Medal of Honor for resolutely not using weapons on the battlefield.

The epic Hacksaw Ridge received a standing ovation from both critics and audiences thanks to the re-enactment of the brutal reality of the war and the emotional story.

Hacksaw Ridge grossed $ 164 million (four times the original budget). It was in the list of “10 Best Movies of the Year” by the American Film Institute. Receiving six Oscar nominations, including the director category for Mel Gibson, showed that Hollywood had welcomed this star to come back.

Actor Andrew Garfield told The Huffington Post: “Before I met Mel, I had heard a lot about him. But when I met him, we talked for a long time about Mel’s past. I understand that he had tried a lot. Mel is a great man, a talented filmmaker. And I really admire him.”

From now until 2018, Mel Gibson has four film projects in which he starred as an actor and a film as a director. After a decade that Hollywood turn away him, the door initially opened to Mel Gibson.

Related: Robert Downey Jr. Then and Now: The Transformation from an Addict to Famous Iron Man

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