10:03 am, April 12th, 2012
An incredibly ugly battle is brewing between Mel Gibson and screenwriter Joe Eszterhas over Gibson’s controversial Judah Maccabee project, shortly after word broke that Warner Bros. had turned down the script and stalled the production.
In a blistering letter to his would-be collaborator, Eszterhas accuses Gibson of being anti-Semitic and dangerous.
“I’ve come to the conclusion that the reason you won’t make The Maccabees is the ugliest possible one,” writes Eszterhas. “You hate Jews.”
The nine-page letter accuses Gibson of using slurs such as ‘oven-dodgers’ and ‘Jewboys’ in conversation, and claims The Passion of the Christ director called the Holocaust “mostly a lot of horses**t.”
According to Eszterhas, Gibson never intended to make The Maccabees, and was only using it “to deflect continuing charges of anti-Semitism,” which Eszterhas believes are richly deserved.
The missive also refers to instances in which Eszterhas says he witnessed Gibson make murderous threats against baby mama Oksana Grigorieva.
Gibson has now responded to Eszterhas’ allegations, penning his own letter, in which he calls Eszterhas’ script “substandard” and “a waste of time.”
He calls the “statements and actions” Eszterhas attributes to him “utter fabrications,” and says he does want to make The Maccabees — just not with Eszterhas’ script.
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