Darkness Illuminated Jodie Foster
Rockin’ Public Servant
Jon Bon Jovi
Wonk ’n’ Roll
Jon Bon Jovi—public-policy
geek? Yup, President Obama
has named the sexy rocker,
49, to his new Council for
Community Solutions. He’s
the only entertainer among
foundation heads, and CEOs—
who, the White House hopes,
will use their diverse backgrounds to reduce youth unemployment. Obama chose Bon
Jovi, whose band had 2010’s
top-grossing worldwide tour,
for his two decades of public
service: His Soul Foundation
works to alleviate poverty in
Philadelphia, and Bon Jovi
performs concerts for causes
ranging from cancer research
to saving the rain forest. In a
recent video, the musician told
fans, “I’m a big believer in the
power of we.” —Christina Ianzito
CLOCKWISE, FROM TOP LEFT: JASON LAVERIS/FILMMAGIC; COURTESY OF SUMMIT ENTERTAINMENT; COURTESY OF TV LAND; GETTY IMAGES
In The Beaver, her latest directorial
project, Jodie Foster portrays the
wife of clinically depressed toy-company executive Walter Black—
played by Mel Gibson—who uses a
beaver hand puppet to communicate
with his family. For Foster, casting
Gibson was risky, given reports of his
personal troubles, including allegations of substance abuse and domestic violence. Foster, 48, spoke about
her hopes for the film, and the Mel
Gibson she knows as her friend.
Q: What message did you want
the film to convey? The film struck
a personal chord for me. It delves
into the loneliness we all feel, faced
with life’s burdens. The only way to
even try to cope is to connect.
Q: Did you draw on personal
experience? Most of us have come
into contact with someone suffering
from depression. When it’s someone
you have known intimately, you have
firsthand knowledge of the devastation it can cause.
Q: Why did you choose Mel Gibson
to costar? I knew he could relate so
much to Walter’s struggles that there
was no way he would treat it as a
comedy. That Mel’s character be dramatically consumed in this internal
struggle was very important to me.
STUFFED FEELINGS Foster and costar Gibson,
whose character speaks through a puppet.
When managers at
a Houston strip club
called her“old” and
fired her at 5 6, Bassi
fought back, settling
suit for $60,000.
A G EIS T
Retired at 35 The TV Land comedy depicts boomers as out-of-touch dweebs. Sample “joke”: George Segal
refers to Facebook
as “Facial Book.” :-(
Q: Do you believe viewers can put
aside their feelings about Gibson
and appreciate his performance?
That’s a good question for you. Can you
put aside your feelings about an artist’s
personal struggles when you watch a
piece of art? I honestly hope so.
Q: Tell us about your friendship with
Gibson. From the moment I met him,
there was such a connection that I
knew we would be friends for the
rest of my life. We work exactly in the
same way: No bull----. We’ve had so
many conversations about the topics the film explores. He is a brilliant
man, a beautiful talent, and a loyal,
loyal friend. That’s the man I know.
Q: A note in the credits at the end
of the film directs viewers wanting
help with depression to a website.
Our socially active financier felt
strongly that the film could help
others suffering from depression
find a path to real help through connection. To access the website, go to
takepart.com/thebeaver. —Meg Grant
A ROCK STAR!
Find the opportunity that’s perfect
for you at createthegood.org.