Anti-Semitic death threat by Mel Gibson alleged, debunked almost simultaneously [Updated]
Oksana Grigorieva says she told authorities that Mel Gibson made a hate-filled death threat toward a Jewish Hollywood figure who allegedly "humiliated him," Radar Online reported Friday — and TMZ chimed in with word that the allegedly endangered Hollywood figure cited in the story was none other than that website's chief, Harvey Levin, and that it had determined the story to be false.
TMZ reports that Grigorieva rep Steve Jaffe "spoon-fed" them the same story earlier this week, saying Oksana said Gibson told her he wanted the "blood of Jews" on his hands and that she'd reported it to the Sheriff's Department. TMZ says it checked out details of the story and they didn't wash. On Friday, Radar reported the "exclusive" story as the actor wanting "Jew blood" on his hands.
Levin says nobody ever warned him of a death threat, and the L.A. County Sheriff's Department told his website they never received any information of the sort.
[Updated: 3:30 p.m.: Sources close to the investigation also said that if everyone in Hollywood who theorized about killing Levin were arrested, the jails would be full and the studios empty.]
Perhaps shockingly — perhaps not shocking at all? — this alleged threat appears not to have been captured ...
... on audio tape.
"Jaffe told Harvey the story on the heels of complaining that a particular TMZ post was not favorable enough to Oksana," TMZ says.
And now, skipping allegations of chair-tossing and lawsuit-threatening that surfaced Thursday, we'd like to relay one particular tidbit that dropped in the Grigorieva-Gibson brouhaha: Echoing something the Ministry has wondered about since hearing "You make me want to smoke" in the second tape, Oksana reportedly said in custody mediation that Gibson had flown off the handle Jan. 6 because he'd quit smoking that day.
Indeed, Gibson put off an interview with The Times' Geoff Boucher only a few days later, citing the effects of nicotine withdrawal.
"I'm coming rapidly to the conclusion that right now, today, my brain cannot function," Gibson told Boucher in January. "Honestly? I'm six days off the cigarette. You're looking at someone who's having a pretty bad withdrawal from a 45-year habit."
The interview was conducted three days later. You can read it here.
— Christie D'Zurilla
Photo: Oksana Grigorieva and Mel Gibson at the Spanish premiere of his film "Edge of Darkness" on Feb. 1. Credit: Juan Medina / Reuters.
Related dispatches from or presented by the Ministry of Gossip:Sheriff will investigate Mel Gibson's extortion claim against Oksana Grigorieva