You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Braveheart woke Scotland: Gibson

Press Association logoPress Association 20/01/2017

Mel Gibson believes his Oscar-winning film Braveheart "woke something up" in Scotland during the country's debate over independence.

The Hollywood star, who played 13th century Scottish warrior William Wallace in the 1995 movie, said the decision to devolve powers to Holyrood had been a "good thing" for Scotland.

But Gibson, 61, did not reveal whether he backed Scottish independence, saying he did not comment on the politics of other countries.

In an interview with the Press Association, Gibson said of Braveheart: "It certainly woke something up there in Scotland. I know they achieved partial autonomy for that and I think it was a good thing.

"I like to stay out of the politics of other people's nations so I won't go further."

The Scottish Parliament was created following the 1997 devolution referendum, while the 2014 vote on Scottish independence ended in favour of remaining part of the UK by 55.3 per cent to 44.7 per cent.

Gibson described Wallace as a "butcher" but said he saw similarities in Second World War hero Desmond Doss, the subject of his latest film Hacksaw Ridge.

Doss was the first conscientious objector to receive America's Medal of Honour after saving the lives of 75 men on a Japanese battlefield without carrying a gun.

"They're both men of conviction who were willing to die for what they believed," Gibson said.

"But Desmond was the pacifist, he wouldn't take another life, whereas Wallace was a butcher. He'd light people on fire.

"Desmond was far more evolved in solving the world's problems."

Hacksaw Ridge, which is up for five Baftas next month, marked Gibson's return to directing for the first time in a decade following a string of controversies in recent years including his controversial anti-Semitic rant in 2006.

More From Press Association

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon