"It's all happening too fast. I've got to put the brakes on or I'll smack into
something." Mel Gibson
Hollywood movie star tycoon Mel Gibson won Oscar awards for both starring and
directing the huge hit Braveheart (1995). He first caught the public's attention
playing Max Rockatansky in Mad Max (1979) and continued to play the title role
in its sequels. Gibson topped the Hollywood celebrity list and was listed in
People's "Most Beautiful and Sexiest" several times.
Gibson's recent film (for which he directed and produced), the controversial
religious drama, The Passion of the Christ (2004), has been recently locked-out
of Oscar's major award categories. Instead, the film was nominated for three
minor awards, makeup, cinematography, and music.
In 2004, Mel Gibson donated $10 million to two hospitals in Los Angeles to aid
children with severe health problems that cannot pay or achieve appropriate
treatment in their homeland.
Childhood and Family:
A New York native, actor, director and producer Mel Columcille Gerard Gibson,
would later be famous as Mel Gibson. Born on January 3, 1956, Gibson was
shuffled to Australia in 1968 after his father won a Jeopardy contest and
because his father wanted to avoid his sons being drafted into the Vietnam War.
Mel spent the rest of his childhood in Sidney and attended a Catholic high
school for boys.
The sixth son of Roman Catholics of Irish decent parents, Hutton Gibson
(railroad brakeman) and Ann Gibson (born in Australia, died December 1990),
Gibson has ten siblings, one of who is brother Donal Gibson (actor, born on
February 13, 1958).
Mel Columcille Gerard Gibson means 'honey' in Portuguese. He has only married
once (a rare feat in Hollywood) and is still married to his wife, Robyn Moore
(dental nurse). The couple married in 1980. Their large family consists of two
daughters, Louis (born in 1988) and Hannah (born in 1980) and five sons, Thomas
(born in 1999), Milo (born in 1990), Willie (born in 1985), Christian (actor,
born in 1982) and Edward (actor, twin of Christian, born in 1982).
"When I first started out acting, I had a suspicion this stardom thing could
happen, but that was it... I didn't care. I mean I really didn't care. I had no
commitments, no kids, no one to be responsible to. But then in a funny kind of
way, the less you care, the easier you seem to get there." Mel Gibson
Formerly expected to be a chef or journalist, Mel Gibson auditioned for Sidney's
National Institute of Dramatic Art due to his sister's insistence. While
studying, he debuted on stage in a production of Romeo Juliet and debuted on
screen with the film Summer City (1977). He was also involved in the Southern
Australian Theater Company where he played the title roles in Oedipus and Henry
IV. Beginning his acting career in Australia, Gibson first appeared in the
Australian TV series The Sullivans (1976). On the big screen, he portrayed the
title roles in Tim (1979), for which he won an Australian Film Institute (AFI)
for Best Actor and Mad Max (1979). He won the AFI award for Best Actor again for
his work in Peter Weir's World War I drama Gallipoli (1981).
It was the worldwide success of the sequel, Mad Max 2 (1981), released in
America as The Road Warrior (1982), which launched Gibson's name
internationally. Also in that same year, Gibson starred in the film The Year of
Living Dangerously, opposite actor Sigourney Weaver. His global fame brought him
back to America and in 1984 Gibson starred with Oscar-winning actor Anthony
Hopkins in the mutiny classic, The Bounty. In 1984 Gibson also costarred with
Sissy Spacek in The River (1984). Mel then returned to Australia to work with
singer Tina Turner in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985).
After finishing his work in the Mad Max trilogy, Gibson returned to America to
take on character Sergeant Martin Riggs, in the smash hit Lethal Weapon (1987,
costarring Danny Glover). The runaway success of Lethal Weapon cinched the
follow-up of Gibson's appearances in Lethal Weapon 2 (1989), Lethal Weapon 3
(1992) and Lethal Weapon 4 (1998). Actor first, producer second, Gibson founded
his own production company, ICON Productions. His company debuted with Franco
Zeffirelli's Hamlet (1990), in which he was cast in the title role and garnered
mixed reviews. He also added his work to Air America (1990), Forever Young
(1992), and his first directed film The Man Without a Face (1993), as well as
Maverick (1994, opposite Jodie Foster).
1995 was probably Gibson's most glorious year. He gathered Oscars for Best
Picture and Best Director with the mega box-office success Braveheart. His
credited role was Sir William Wallace, a Scottish leader of the 13th century.
Following in that year, Gibson lent his voice to John Smith in Disney's animated
A string of other high-profile movies are listed in Gibson's resume, including
Ransom (1996), Conspiracy Theory (1997), Payback (1999), The Patriot (2000),
What Women Want (2000), Signs (2002), We Were Soldiers (2002), and The Singing
In 2004 Gibson released his controversial film, The Passion of the Christ. The
film received mixed reviews ranging from brilliant to anti-Semitism. The
controversy actually increased the public's awareness of the film, moving vast
numbers of viewers to theaters. Gibson is currently working on the fourth
chapter of Mad Max, Fury Road. "I like directing much better. It's more fun,
that's all there is to it. It's essentially the same job, which is storytelling,
but you have more control over the way you want to tell the story. It's a high.
I love it." Mel Gibson.
People's Choice: Favorite Actor in a Film, 1997
MTV Movie: Best Action Sequence, Braveheart, 1996
Oscar: Best Picture, Braveheart, 1995
Oscar: Best Director, Braveheart, 1995
Golden Globe: Best Director, Braveheart, 1995
BAFTA Lloyds Bank: Favorite Film, Braveheart, 1995
NATO/ShoWest Director of the Year, 1995
Broadcast Film Critics Association: Best Director, Braveheart, 1995
MTV Movie: Best Onscreen Duo, Lethal Weapon 3, 1993
NATO/ShoWest Male Star of the Year, 1992
Australian Film Institute: Best Actor, Gallipoli, 1981
Australian Film Institute: Best Actor, Tim, 1979