^
Keep Westword Free
4

Oksana Grigorieva spends $84,000 on PR; world continues to not care

In a weird new twist on an already really bizarre scenario, Oksana Grigorieva, the estranged wife of Mel Gibson, asked a judge to reimburse her for $84,000 she claims she spent on a PR push to counter the public perception that she sold the infamous tapes of Gibson being racist and violent, which, for Gibson, is pretty much status quo. Aside from the fact that, as reported by TMZ, "the judge would never award money for PR expenses," it's hard to imagine a more ineffective use of $84,000 -- not because it didn't help to alter that perception, but because it was a perception nobody cared about in the first place.

Back in July, when the tapes were released, "sources" told TMZ (which is not exactly a wellspring of journalistic integrity, we'll acknowledge) that Grigorieva had tried to extort Gibson to the tune of more than $10 million to keep the tapes quiet. But even TMZ acknowledged that the sources were affiliated with Gibson. Still, the Gibson camp convinced the L.A. Sheriff's Department in late July to open an investigation into the claims, which is still ongoing.

But that whole investigation has been virtually ignored by everybody in favor of the tapes themselves, which feature Gibson reaching new heights of racism and white anger even for him -- also, interestingly, without any trace of an Australian accent, even though he's from Australia. That's not really related; it's just kind of odd. At any rate, whether she was trying to extort him or not, Gibson's hateful screed pretty much trumped whatever methods she might have used to put it out there.

Legal fees stemming from the sheriff's investigation, sure -- that's an understandable expense. But the public perception of Oksana Grigorieva is about the least of the problems of Oksana Grigorieva; to the extent that Grigorieva represents anything more than a target for the psychotic rage of an iconic celebrity unraveling at a startling pace, she's certainly got public sympathy on her side. But mostly, she's beside the point. The point is, and always has been, Mel Gibson. They're both fascinating in the way car wrecks or building implosions are fascinating -- but Gibson's implosion will always be the more spectacular, if only because Grigorieva was never in Mad Max.

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.