This week screenwriter Joe Eszterhas released a profanity-laced recording starring Oscar-winning actor Mel Gibson.
“Why don’t I have a first draft of “The Maccabees?" What the f--- have you been doing?” Gibson screams, unaware that he was being recorded by Eszterhas' son.
Eszterhas says his family was staying at Gibson’s home in Costa Rica this past December when Gibson went off about their film project. Gibson also goes after his ex, Oksana Grigorieva, ranting: “I am earning money for a filthy little c--ksucker who takes advantage of me!”
This is familiar territory when it comes to Gibson. In 2006, he was arrested for a DUI and went on an anti-Semitic diatribe against the arresting officer. In 2010, several tapes were released online of the actor/director verbally abusing Grigorieva, the mother of his two-year-old daughter, Lucia.
"[H]iring him for any project invites trouble, unwanted negative publicity and brings with it unpredictability"
- PR pro Glenn Selig
Yet following each hate-filled meltdown, the “Braveheart” star managed to bounce back and make more movies, albeit fewer and farther between than in his career prime.
But now that could all be over, experts say.
“Much of Hollywood has already shunned Mel Gibson and that’s why it was so shocking to many when ‘The Maccabees’ selected him for the project. The fact that Gibson’s rant involves the film’s screenwriter will almost certainly lead to a blacklisting,” PR pro Glenn Selig told FOX411’s Pop Tarts column. “It also is proof that despite [everything], Gibson has not changed and is still in desperate need of anger management counseling, and that hiring him for any project invites trouble, unwanted negative publicity and brings with it unpredictability.”
According to an industry site, Gibson has no projects in the works aside from a “rumored” role in Robert Rodriguez’s “Machete” sequel entitled “Machete Kills.” His only movie slated for release this year, his self-financed crime drama “Get the Gringo,” will skip a theatrical run entirely and debut on DirecTV next month.
Industry watcher Scott Huver says the only way Gibson can maintain a Hollywood presence is to produce and fund his own films.
“As one of Hollywood’s highest-grossing, highest-paid stars for decades, financing his own films won’t be a problem: finding distributors, theaters that will play them and audiences to see them will be the issue,” Huver said. “At this point, given the presumed frequency of these sorts of tantrums, anyone in Hollywood – even Gibson’s biggest filmmaking fans and supporters – would have to give pause to the notion of working with him again, at least until he’s able to show demonstrate some concrete progress in managing his volcanic outbursts."
As it stands, public apologies like he has made in the past aren't likely enough.
“He would be well-advised to ignore any fallout from his latest taped rant. He has already been blacklisted in Hollywood, that’s why he is living in Costa Rica and producing his own movies,” says crisis management expert Gene Grabowski of Levick Strategic Communications. “Because of his success 20 years ago, Gibson no longer has to seek job offers. He now creates his own opportunities, but if he invests too much time explaining his position and responding to fallout, he will only lose more fans.”
TMZ reported that Gibson may sue Eszterhas over possible invasion of privacy. A rep for Gibson declined to comment.