The highly anticipated sequel to Mel Gibson’s revered film ‘Passion of the Christ’ is set to begin filming in January. The sequel titled ‘Resurrection’ has been in development over the last ten years, according to CBN News. Reflecting on the amount of time this film is taking to produce, Gibson said the subject matter is very significant and needs to be an experience for audiences, not just a story being told about what happened.
The sequel is set to have some of the same actors returning for their roles such as Jim Caviezel who portrayed Jesus Christ in the original picture, Maia Morgenstern who portrayed Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Francesco De Vito who portrayed Peter. Caviezel praised the enormity of the project and Gibson’s dedication to doing the film with integrity. In an interview with The Shawn Ryan Show, Caviezel discussed the amount of time Gibson has worked on the film and called it “the biggest film in history,” noting that it could be two or maybe even three films.
Gibson reportedly told Greg Laurie at Harvest Crusade that he wants to take his time developing the screenplay for the important film. According to CBN News, Gibson said, “It’s called ‘The Resurrection’. Of course, that’s a very big subject and it needs to be looked at because we don’t want to just do a simple rendering of it — you know, read what happened […] But in order to read it, experience and explore probably deeper meanings of what it’s about, it’s going to take some doing.”
There have reportedly been six drafts of the screenplay for the sequel which is supposed to “focus on the 24 hours encompassing Jesus’ passion and the events that occurred three days between his Crucifixion and Resurrection,” explained filmed journalist Jordan Ruimy.
While SAG-AFTRA continues its strike, many independent projects are still in production. It is unknown yet whether the strike will impact ‘Resurrection.’ According to CBN News, “the original film Passion of the Christ made $612 million on a $30 million budget making it the highest-grossing R-rated film domestically and one of the most successful independent films of all time. Since the major studios balked at Gibson’s pitch for the original film, he financed the film himself.” Gibson also marketed the film himself, bypassing traditional publicity avenues and promoting it directly to churches instead.