Mark Ruffalo breaks Hollywood ranks over Ellen's George W Bush friendship

Mark Ruffalo, Ellen DeGeneres and Reese Witherspoon

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Avengers star Mark Ruffalo has disagreed with Ellen DeGeneres’ defence of her friendship with ex-US President George W Bush.

After being pictured with Mr Bush, the TV host said she was friends with many people who don’t share her views, adding we should “be kind to everyone”.

But Hulk actor Ruffalo said Mr Bush should be “brought to justice for the crimes of the Iraq War”.

He added “we can’t even begin to talk about kindness” until that happens.

However the likes of Reese Witherspoon, Jamie Foxx and Jennifer Garner backed DeGeneres.

The TV host and comic sparked a fierce debate on social media after sitting next to Mr Bush, who was in power from 2001 to 2009, at an NFL match at the weekend.

“People were upset,” DeGeneres said on her show. “They thought, why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president?”

The former president has faced condemnation for leading the country into war with Iraq and Afghanistan, and he also opposed gay marriage while in office.

The talk show host explained that she was indeed friends with Bush, adding: “When I say, ‘Be kind to one another,’ I don’t only mean the people that think the same way that you do. I mean be kind to everyone. Doesn’t matter.”

On Instagram, Witherspoon replied with the word “Exactly” accompanied by a bullseye emoji. Foxx said: “Thank uuu very much for that!!!! Soooo needed and Necessary.” Garner chimed in with: “Ellen! You are amazing! ♥️”

Singer Lenny Kravitz offered: “Let Love Rule!”, Kendall Jenner contributed a flurry of exclamation marks and love heart emojis, and actress Kristen Bell added her voice.

Bell’s The Good Place co-star Jameela Jamil also praised the talk show host for her “incredibly strong” handling of the controversy.

But the British actress then rowed back after being bombarded by comments from critics of the former president.

It was pointed out by some Twitter users that she was 23 when he left office – but she explained that she had been though so much that she hadn’t been aware of many things that went on at the time.

“I’m really lucky that as young as 28 I even had a chance to get my mental health back and have some time and space in my life to be able to start learning, and it’s been a journey,” she said in a video.

“I’m way behind and I’m not embarrassed of that, and you can’t make me feel ashamed of it, because I’m actually trying.”

DeGeneres said she and her wife Portia had been invited to watch the Dallas Cowboys play the Green Bay Packers on Sunday by Cowboys executive vice president Charlotte Jones.

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