Mel Gibson’s handler awkwardly stops interview with Jesse Watters after question on Will Smith slap

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(Video Credit: Fox News)

Fox News host Jesse Watters sat down on Friday with legendary actor, director, and producer Mel Gibson to discuss his upcoming movie “Father Stu” and wound up abruptly having the segment cut by his handler after asking him about actor Will Smith slapping comedian Chris Rock at the Oscars.

The question that got the interview terminated was when Watters asked if the “Passion of the Christ” director thought he would be treated the same way that Smith was after slapping Rock over a joke about the bald appearance of his wife, actress Jada Pinkett Smith.

Following the assault, Smith was allowed to stay for the rest of the ceremony and then attend a party afterward. On Friday, he officially resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences over the incident. Whether he keeps his Oscar or not is still in question.

“You understand it probably better than a lot of people, with your career,” Watters began. “I was wondering if you had been the one that jumped up out of his seat and slapped Chris Rock if you would’ve been treated the same way, Mel,” he asked as Gibson nervously laughed, pointed, and waved his hand at the host in an apparent gesture that he would not answer the question.

The question evidently came as a surprise to the “Lethal Weapon” actor.

An answer from Gibson never came as a woman interrupted the interview to cut it off.

“Hello, Jessie?” the woman said. “Thank you. That’s our time.”

“Have you ever thought about that?” Watters continued.

“Um thank you, Jessie,” the woman interjected. “That is our time.”

“Well, Mel, thank you very much for joining ‘Jesse Watters Primetime.’ We really appreciate it,” the Fox News host stated.

Watters then gave a plug for the movie that Gibson stars in with actor Mark Wahlberg. It is based on the true story of Stuart Long, a boxer who became a Catholic priest.

Gibson replied, “Thank you.”

Watters joked about the incident later in his show reading a text from a viewer who asked, “Do you think Mel Gibson had any idea who you are?”

“If I was a betting man, I’d say no,” Watters replied. “But I’d like to hope he had an inkling of who he was talking to.”

Wahlberg, who is Catholic, has reportedly been wanting to tell the story of the Rev. Stuart Long for years and will star in the movie, according to Religion News Service. Gibson will play Long’s father.

“Everyone’s got a boulder, man,” Gibson stated during the interview regarding the theme of the movie. “Something’s going to come and knock you down at some point in your life. Now. Later. And how do you stand up from that, you know? How do you not only stand up but how do you find a purpose in that? There’s a purpose for all of this. So it’s looking for that purpose.”

He also noted that “it’s never too late to fix stuff.”

The film, which is distributed by Sony Pictures, premiers on April 13.


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