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Robert Downey Jr. Wants Hollywood to Forgive Mel Gibson

October 15, 2011 (5:04 pm) GMT
During his acceptance speech at American Cinematheque Awards, Downey asked the crowd to offer Gibson the same slate that they have given him in the past.
Robert Downey Jr., Susan Levin

made it about during his tribute at the 25th Annual American Cinematheque Award Show. In front of fellow celebrity stars, the "" actor recalled how Gibson helped him during his own dark time and eventually asked Hollywood to forgive Gibson of "his trespasses".

Downey personally asked for Gibson to hand him the Cinematheque honor. "I asked Mel to present this award for me for a reason," he said. "When I couldn't get sober, he told me not to give up hope and encouraged me to find my faith. It didn't have to be his or anyone else's as long as it was rooted in forgiveness. And I couldn't get hired, so he cast me in the lead of a movie that was actually developed for him."

Gibson famously helped Downey to make a comeback by paying Downey's insurance bond so he could star in 2003's "". "He kept a roof over my head and food on the table and most importantly he said if I accepted responsibility for my wrongdoing and embraced that part of my soul that was ugly, hugging the cactus he calls it, he said that if I hugged the cactus long enough, I'd become a man," Downey added in his acceptance speech.

He continued, "I would ask that you join me, unless you are completely without sin, in which case you picked the wrong f*cking industry, in forgiving my friend his trespasses and offering him the same clean slate you have me, allowing him to continue his great and ongoing contribution to our collective art without shame. He's hugged the cactus long enough."

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