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After working in film and TV in Australia, Gibson broke through to American audiences as the post-apocalyptic hero Mad Max in George Millers futuristic trilogy. Then he made the leap to big studio action fare with Richard Donners Lethal Weapon series, which gradually turned Mel into a cuddly action star always ready with a quip.
Post-80s highlight: Winning the Best Director and Best Picture Oscars in 1996 for Braveheart.
Post-80s lowlight: His ill-advised comments upon being pulled over for drunk driving in Malibu in 2006.
Where are they now? His self-funded blockbuster The Passion of the Christ allowed Gibson to choose his own career path. Hes since directed one semi-well-received film (Apocalypto), bought his own island in the Pacific, and done the 2010 thriller "Edge of Darkness."