Mel Gibson has been a golden boy at Oscars past, of course. He won an Academy Award for directing "Braveheart," best picture champ of 1995, and he's been an awards contender for other films like "Ransom" (1996) and "What Women Want" (2000) — they earned him Golden Globe nominations. "Passion of the Christ" and "Apocalypto" (2006) were nominated for three Oscars in the tech categories but lost.
Later this year, Mel Gibson stars in "The Beaver," directed by double Oscar champ Jody Foster. Next year he stars in "How I Spent My Summer Vacation," which he also co-wrote. Can he ever jump back into the Oscar derby?
Hooligan behavior can backfire at the Oscars. Remember what happened to Russell Crowe. Soon after he won best actor for "Gladiator" (2000), he got into trouble for bullying a BAFTA TV producer and he lost best actor for "A Beautiful Mind," which won best picture of 2001. At least he got nominated. Not so two years later, which was especially embarrassing. Everybody associated with "Master and Commander" got an Oscar nomination (10 in all, including best picture) except for the film's master and commander: Russell Crowe.
Two years later, after Crowe got caught hurling a phone at a Manhattan hotel clerk, he wasn't nominated for "Cinderella Man." And he hasn't been nommed since.
Photo: "Braveheart" (Paramount).