PHOTOS: Mel Gibson -- Smokin' Hot?

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May. 17 2011, Updated 5:10 a.m. ET

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by Radar Staff

A shirtless Mel Gibson puffed on a cigarette as he soaked up some sun in France on Tuesday, hours before his new film, The Beaver, premiered at the famed Cannes Film Festival.

The Oscar winning director/actor ,55,  didn’t attend the official photo call and press conference for The Beaver earlier Tuesday, but he did walk the red carpet when the movie, directed by his friend, Jodie Foster,  screened in the evening.

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In The Beaver, the controversial Gibson plays a depressed man who tries to reclaim his life by speaking through a beaver hand puppet; the movie is getting mixed reviews in the U.S., but was met with enthusiastic applause at the press screening.

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