Jodie Foster Sticks By Mel Gibson: He’s ‘Extraordinary’ In ‘The Beaver’

Jodie Foster isn’t worried about Mel Gibson’s personal life affecting her latest movie, “The Beaver.” In fact, the actor-director says her longtime friend delivers a stunning performance.

“Can anybody really look at a movie for just the art’s sake? Can you remove yourself from some of the baggage? Things you may have read on the Internet about the actor. Can you remove yourself from their private struggles made public? I don’t know, that is a good question,” Jodie told Access Hollywood at the film’s junket in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

Jodie explained that the personal life of her close friend, who made headlines in the summer of 2010 when controversial audio recordings with then-girlfriend Oksana Gregorieva were leaked online, parallels the struggle’s of Mel’s “Beaver” character.

“I think in some ways, Mel’s deep inner life, complex inner life, a man who is dealing with struggle, who understands that battle with struggle, it brings a different viewing to the film. In some ways, it is a little deeper,” she explained. “I feel like that particular place, that spiritual crisis of looking at yourself and being disappointed about who you became and wanting to change, I think that’s something that Mel understands in a very personal way, waiting to change and wanting to transform and worried that he can’t transform.”

The 48-year-old star did admit that the film being pushed back multiple times was taxing.

“We’ve had three different releases,” she said. “It’s hard on a director, but in the end, the great news is that I have a movie, I got to make a movie.

“Mel Gibson’s performance is extraordinary,” she continued. “He was really the best actor for this and I’m grateful of the performance he gave.”

The director, who also stars in the movie, admits some people might not be able look past Mel’s personal life before seeing the movie.

“There will be some people who may feel uncomfortable seeing a film with Mel Gibson, I’m sorry for them because it’s a great film,” she said. “I don’t know if people can look past the fact that they have [been] forced to witness private conversations, over and over again… I think his priority is doing the right thing and getting his life together.”

“The Beaver,” also starring Oscar nominee Jennifer Lawrence and “Star Trek’s” Anton Yelchin, hits theaters on May 20.

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