Alas, Mel Gibson will have to look elsewhere for a role rewarding him for being an anti-Semitic rage monkey. Deadline is reporting he won’t be in “The Hangover 2″ after all.
Interestingly, the statement from director Todd Phillips says he and Warner Bros. were all for Gibson’s appearance. “But I realize filmmaking is a collaborative effort, and this decision ultimately did not have the full support of my entire cast and crew,” Phillips says in the statement.
Hmm. Weird timing. The Page Six story broke on October 17. The next day, Vulture noticed star Zach Galifianakis seemed to voice some issues with “The Hangover 2″ on a comedy podcast this month (emphasis added):
But a movie you’re acting in, you don’t have a lot of control — you just show up and vomit your lines out. I’m not the boss. I’m in a deep protest right now with a movie I’m working on, up in arms about something. But I can’t get the guys to [listen] … I’m not making any leeway.” Galifianakis cut Aukerman off with an abrupt warning sound as the host began to mention the film’s title, but after Aukerman pressed, “I know you’re filming The Hhhhhhhh … ” Galifianakis admitted, “It has something to do with a movie I’m working on, yeah. I’ll tell you about it later. It’s very frustrating.”
Commenters on the Vulture story noted that it was likely the Gibson thing. It does seem like too much of a coincidence to be anything else. It’s nice to know that Galifianakis (and anybody who vocally agreed with him) still has some moral grounding. Not to say Gibson never can/should work again, because the world is the world and he will get movie roles down the line (Jodie Foster will make damn sure of it), but it’s not like he did something wrong, went to therapy, did anything to remotely show penance or remorse, etc. Not sure that will help terribly, because he has a bit of history as a Jew-hating/woman-threatening/gay-bashing Aussie Hulk, but I’m just saying. The dude’s latest bout of dangerous behavior is still news to some people. It’s recent. It’s fresh. Why reward him?
While Bradley Cooper might be getting the bigger movie roles, Galifianakis is the lynchpin of this pseudo-franchise, so it’s admirable that he’d take a stand on this. And it’s nice to know Phillips and Warner Bros. are full of the kind of integrity and sound judgment that you would expect from people who want to make “The Hangover 2.”
UPDATE: TMZ reports discontent from cast members, not just one, so there’s that.
(By the way, two notes on Deadline’s weird little mini-story: A) They call it “The Hangover Part II,” which, is it the 1980s? Do people still do the “Part II” thing? and B) They say “despite web rumors.” Uh, pretty sure Page Six is printed? Part of a newspaper? And also has a Web site? OH, right, Deadline is just being dismissive of any other outlets, so they can continue acting like they are the only actual entertainment reporters around, and also because dismissing it as some Web chatter makes their “scoops” all the juicier. Right. Gotcha. Of course, they learned this because Warner Bros. released a statement, but whatever.)