Donner directed and produced the four previous "Lethal Weapon" films, which starred Gibson.
The Los Angeles Times said Donner is not involved in plans to make a fifth installment in the franchise because producer Joel Silver wants original "Lethal Weapon" scribe Shane Black to direct the next film based on a script Black wrote.
"Mel turned it down," Donner told the newspaper. "I would like to think that Mel turned it down because I wasn't involved. Knowing Mel, I would like to think that. Would that be the kind of thing he does? It sure would be."
The Times said Gibson's representatives declined to make an official comment, but gave the impression Donner's suspicions were on the money.
Donner also directed Gibson in "Conspiracy Theory" and "Maverick."
The Times said Silver and and Donner had a falling out several years ago and Donner had been working on his own "Lethal Weapon 5," which he was confident he could have convinced Gibson to headline.
"The project is pretty much dead in the water unless someone had the sense to come to me," Donner told the Times.