The scandalous story of Mel Gibson and Russian-born pianist Oksana Grigorieva is coming to its logical end. The pair is dealing with one court battle after another. But can we Russians be surprised by such an ending? The rich and famous in our country don’t mind crossing the line when fighting for their children. We’ve seen battles that Hollywood hasn’t even dreamed of.
It’s a pity though that the illusion has faded away. The tale about a Russian goldigger Oksana who masterfully plays with weaknesses of Hollywood stars is smashed into pieces…
First husband stole their wedding money
- In America no one is interested in Oksana’s first marriage, - says her mother Lyudmila. – By law the marriage is considered invalid if the couple was married for less than two months. In Russia on the other hand everyone is curious about Oksana’s first husband. Journalists began looking for Igor Baranov from the town of Shakhtersk, where we are all from originally. They did not get Igor himself, but managed to find his mother. She could not say anything better but that Oksana had nothing when she got married except for a single blouse and dirty feet. Well… let God be her judge. Nowitsourturntotellthetruth. We almost never give interviews. Although newspapers, magazines and TV channels often call and offer big money. Wealwaysrefuse. Russiansdon’tsellinformationabouttheirchildren!
My husband and I decided to make an exception for “Komsomolskaya Pravda” because we want to dismiss allegations about our daughter and tell the truth.
- We had no idea Oksana was married in Russia…
- Since I was a girl I used to look after the grave of pilot Baranov, Hero of the Soviet Union. In a twist of fate my daughter Oksana met his grandson Igor, when she was 18. Hewasyoungandhandsome. Oksana was waiting for him during his compulsory two-year military service. My poor naïve baby, she had no idea what kind of life she was getting herself into. Igor’sparentskeptitsecretthathewasadrugaddict. In Soviet times we had no idea what drug addicts looked like. We thought that if a person does not stink of alcohol, then everything is fine.
Oksana Grigorieva and Igor Baranov got married in Shakhtersk.
Second husband – a do-nothing
After the first failed marriage Oksana studied in music conservatory for two years and worked in music school at the same time. Then she moved to UK where she gave music classes, worked as a model and looked after an old Enlish lady.
- Oksana’s second marriage was in London, - continues Ludmila. – His name was Nicolas Roland. Hewasa43-yearoldarchitect. Shewas23 atthetime. Roland was a very kind and wonderful person. His only downside was that he did not want to work. Oksana worked in three different places at the time to paythe bills. Nicolas’s house was a mess. So Oksana stripped the floors, washed windows and so on. After one year she could not take it anymore and left. They were literally starving. After divorce she had a right for one half of the house. Butshetooknothingbutherthings. Andevenleftherpianoforhim. Iwasfurious: “Why? It’s your instrument!” But she just said: “Mother I’ll work and buy myself a new one. But he will be able to sell it and manage somehow for a while”.
That’s what my baby is like – Liudmila sighs hopelessly.
- Some time later Oksana met a man who had very strong feelings for her, - Liudmila continues. – His name was Alan Bertman. Hewasnotrich. Theylivedinatwo-roomflatinLondon. AlanproposedtoOksana. We began wedding preparations, - Liudmila takes a deep breath. - And the day before the wedding Oksana came home to find Alan in bed with another woman. Oksana’s friend Victoria came to help her, they threw some clothes into a bin bag and left. That’showOksanaleftAlan. ButhedidnotunderstandthisproudRussiangesture. Hebeganwritingletterstoher, comingtoseeheratwork. Heevenpretendedtobeseriouslyillandwenttosomehospital. Oksana came there, entered the ward and could not believe her eyes – the walls were covered with her photos. Alanwasbegging: “Iamdyingwithoutyou! Pleasecomeback!” Butshecouldnotforgivehim.
A month later Oksana was attacked in the street, beaten and robbed. Though later someone dropped off her bag at her place. We still don’t know for sure who did it. We can only keep guessing…
After Timothy Oksana swore: no more actors!
- Oksana began dating Timothy Dalton a year after that story with Alan, - says Liudmila. They met when she was looking for job and applied to British Association of Interpreters. At that time film “Burnt by the sun” was brought to London and she was invited to interpret.
They spent eight years together with Tim. But it was not a walk in the park.
The break up with Dalton was very hard. But they managed to remain friends and raise their son together. After that relationship ended Oksana said: I’ll never date an actor again!
Seven years later Mel Gibson came into her life.
Liudmila Chernukha is an official witness in the court battle between Oksana and Mel. She is not allowed to give away any information about Gibson. Therefore she refused to talk about Oksana’s present life. So we talked to Grigorieva’s father about her life in America. Petr Chernukha has just returned from US, where he went to give moral support to his daughter.
Mel Gibson should go to monastery!
- Petr, Oksana was in our newspaper’s office just a few months ago telling us what an amazing father Mel was. Andsuddenlysuchaturnofevents! Pleasetellushowthingsareatthemoment.
- The judge ruled that Mel spends with Lucia 20 percent of the time and Oksana – 80 percent. But it’s not enough for Mel, - says Petr. – He wants to take away Lucia and get rid of Oksana. Excuse my language but he screams to my daughter: “Go back to your Russian hole! Ineedonlymydaughter!”
- Petr, did Oksana consider returning to Russia?
- Of course not! How can she leave when her two children are in America? Mel is a very greedy person. He says who needs mother when a nanny is much cheaper! So these days when he wants to see his daughter, a nanny comes to Oksana to pick up Lucia and take her to Gibson’s house with police escort. That is the way it will be until Mel sorts out his anger issues. Everyone is afraid of his fits of aggression.
- Perhaps Gibson does not like a policeman living in his house?
- Mel is trying to be nice to the lady from police – they often have a coffee and smoke a cigarette together. He can be charming when he wants to. Oksana and Mel loved each other, I knew that. But their relationship was irritating the rest of the Gibsons. His ex-wife Robyn, people who work for him really wanted him to get this love out of his head. They brought prostitutes for Mel to his office and even to their house when Oksana was away. She lived in two places at the time – one week with Mel in Malibu, the next week with her son Alexander in another house in LA. Mel was open about being jealous of Oksana’s attention to her son. He hated Sasha and even hit him once. After that Oksana did her best to avoid them being together.
As people close to Oksana and Mel told “KP”, after the scandal it turned out that Mel had four lovers in the last two years: Tiffany, Jennifer, Nicole and Violet. Twoofthemcouldgiveevidenceincourt. VioletCowalevengaveinterviewtoseveralpapers. Butthegirlswereintimidated and soon got quiet. Unfortunately, one of the witnesses – Lucia’s nanny Latisha has recently passed away. She was present when Mel used to bring Violet Cowal to the house and screamed at her.
- Latisha told Oksana before dying: “I felt he’d fire me. I knew too much», - says Petr.
- Did Oksana turn a blind eye on Mel’s unfaithfulness?
- Lately their life was not simple. Mel felt terrible because of his cheating. He kept lying that he loved Oksana and would never cheat on her. But my daughter felt betrayal. Once she found somebody’s shoes in her closet. As my wife, Lyudmila, says Mel should go to monastery! Maybe in that case God will forgive him for what he did.
- Do Oksana and Mel see each other?
- No. For the past few months everything has been done through lawyers. When the scandal began Mel wrote Oksana a letter with modest apologies. God grant that after all these court battles they could manage to contact somehow. They need to raise their daughter after all.
- Does Oksana have any complaints to Mel about Lucia?
- There’s this problem in LA, though it may seem strange and unexpected. There are rats there and they even get into houses. It’s extremely difficult to rid of them. Mel’s house wasn’t an exception. However he would leave Lucia to sleep alone in her room! Supposedly the floor is squeaky there and the girl can wake up if nanny is there. Lucia’s doctor was shocked when he found out about it: “A rat can even bite off baby’s ear!”
Mel promised: “I’ll go into therapy!”
- What does Oksana live on in America?
- Her friends help her. She owes over 70 thousand dollars to bank. The court battle is endless. Lawyers forbade Oksana to work until its all over. Timothy Dalton gives her a great moral support. He is not a rich person. He has not been working for a long time. Recently he played a small part in a film with Angelina Jolie in Venice. Other than that he is practically unemployed. But he still pays 2,5 thousand dollars in child support for Sasha monthly. Oksana spends the same amount on her son.
- Petr, they wrote that Mel offered Oksana 40 million dollars for Lucia.
- It’s a lie! Mel offered Oksana to sign some ambiguous agreement, according to which Lucia would get 15 million dollars when she turns 18. But that contract had terrible terms for Oksana. He could take their daughter away from her any time. Oksanarefusedtosignit. We, Russians, don’tsellourchildren!
- Petr, we remember how your wife was charmed by Mel. She told us that she had the best son-in-law in the world…
- Yes, indeed. Last November our daughter invited us to US to meet Mel. I could not go, so Lyudmila went on her own. She stayed there for six weeks and was under his charm. Mel was a real head of the family, everyone listened to him. She even told Oksana: “Stick to Mel, he is a good man!” There was only one thing. Once in a while he’d slam the door, get into his car and storm off on great speed. “Don’t worry, Mum. Mel left to manage his beast”, - explained Oksana.
It happened two days before Lyudmila’s return to Russia. She was in the house ironing Mel’s shirts. All of a sudden she heard a scream and a roar. She ran to Mel and Oksana’s room. She saw her daughter sitting on bed pressing Lucia to her chest while Mel was screaming like mad. Then William, Mel’s son from his previous marriage came to the house (the house of Mel’s former wife Robyn, where she lives with their children was nearby and children would often visit their father –KP). Lyudmila was so shocked that she asked: “William, what is it?” But Mel’s son was not even surprised; it was a normal situation for him.
Mel grabbed a chair, threw it into a glass door and it broke into pieces. Then he began jumping and pushing Oksana with his shoulder. While she had the baby in her arms! He would have beaten our daughter if Lyudmila was not around. The next day Mel was blushing with embarrassment and apologized to my wife. Oksana was interpreting his words into Russian: “Lyudmila, I do not know how you will forgive me. Butthiswillneverhappenagain. Believeme. YouseeIusedtobeanalcoholic. Mynervoussystemisbadlydamaged”. Mel also said that his mother was giving him a hard time when he was little. That’s why sometimes he feels like he hates women.
I was shocked when I found out. But I believed that he would go into therapy.
In the end of December Lyudmila returned to Russia. You know what happened afterwards. Everyonewroteaboutit. Melwasfullofungroundedjealousy. He was turning into a beast. I think he did not believe Oksana because he himself was cheating on her.
- I heard that Mel’s lawyers took Oksana’s computer.
- They did in order to check authenticity of her audio recordings (on those recordings Gibson threatens Oksana – KP). They carried out several examinations. It turned out that recordings were real. Those tapes that became public were made by Oksana. Her mother advised her to do that because she was scared she would not see her daughter alive and would not be able to prove anything in foreign country. The tapes were meant for a closed court hearing – not to allow Mel take Lucia away from Oksana and to make him seek professional help. We were horrified when learned that they leaked into internet. Somuchdirtwaspilingaround! It was insulting both for Mel and Oksana. At the time tapes were in possession of court and lawyers. So we have no idea who sold it to the press (soon after the incident with tapes Grigorieva changed her lawyer – KP).
- Petr, how did Mel split from his first wife?
- Perhaps, Robyn was sick and tired of his behavior. Mel has seven children. All of them are scared of their father. They know that each of them has 10 million dollars on their own bank account. But! They’ll be able to get the money only after turning 35. That was Mel’s condition. He bought each of them a house. But he does not allow his children to have domestic help. Economizing. He himself has a huge house and only one housekeeper. My wife used to help her clean when she was in America.
- Did Mel buy a house for Lucy too?
- Hedidnot! The house where Oksana and Lucia live belongs to Mel. He is allowing them to be there for now. But he is planning to make Oksana pay rent. Mel Gibson is almost a billionaire (Gibson has an estimated 900 million fortune – KP). He is paying child support for Lucy in the amount of 5 thousand dollars a month. But he had not paid a cent from December till July. Oksana pays 5 thousand a month for house bills alone!
- Was it Mel’s former wife Robyn who accustomed him to such economy?
- While Mel was shooting “The Edge of Darkness” he received 20 million dollars. Robynhadaccesstohismoneyatthetime. Mel was on his way home when she managed to get 15 million and buy a second house for their eldest daughter Hannah. Just for reference: the house in which Oksana and Lucia live cost 1 million 700 thousand dollars.
- Does Mel at least support Lucia?
- He only buys food for her. Helivesalonenow. But there are always lots of people around – friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances. Endlesslunchesanddinners. Shops in Malibu are really expensive too. You have to fork out 700 to 1000 dollars to fill the shopping cart with food.
- Did you manage to make friends with somebody from Mel’s circle?
- My wife liked his sister Mora and her husband Sean. Actually Sean is the nicest of them all. HesimplylovedLyudmila’ssoups. Hewasnotpeaky.
- What about Mel’s children? Did they communicate with Oksana?
- Oksana bought them expensive presents. Last Christmas she bought 17 thousand dollars worth of presents. Mel did not like it. He used to give 100 dollars each. Many people are convinced that Oksana lived in a fairytale when she was with Mel. Funny to say: the dresses that my daughter wore in public were borrowed from shops.
- They wrote that Timothy Dalton visits Oksana’s house regularly
- Timothy never remarried after Oksana. He often says to Oksana: “You were the biggest love of my life!” So now Oksana has only one way to go – to Tim (laughing).
- Do you think they can make it work second time around?
- I would love if it worked out that way. Yes, Tim could raise his voice at Oksana. Buthewouldneverraisehis hand like Gibson!