Rob Reiner on Mel Gibson and The Passion

Rob Reiner on Mel Gibson and The Passion August 28, 2006

Rob Reiner talks about the Mel Gibson situation:

Mel Gibson’s apology for making drunken anti-Semitic remarks isn’t enough to redeem him, actor-producer Rob Reiner said.

The actor also must acknowledge that “his work reflects anti-Semitism,” particularly the 2004 hit movie “The Passion of the Christ,” Reiner told Associated Press Radio.

“When he comes to the understanding that he has done that, and can come out and say, you know, ‘My views have been reflected in my work and I feel bad that I’ve done that,’ then that will be the beginning of some reconciliation for him,” Reiner said. . . .

Reiner, however, said Gibson also must do some “major soul-searching.”

“It’s not a matter of just apologizing for some words you’ve said,” said Reiner, who is Jewish. “It’s to really understand why it is you’re anti-Semitic and where those feelings came from.”

“I believe that people can be redeemed and people can change, but that’s going to be a very long process,” he added.

Two points. First, Reiner might want to tread carefully here, since a number of his own films have reflected anti-Christian prejudice, and one could argue that he needs to understand where those feelings come from, too. Second, Reiner has openly talked about how making movies like Stand By Me (1986) has given him an opportunity to work through his feelings about his relationship with his father, and I would sure hope he could sympathize with the fact that Gibson has some serious father issues of his own.

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