Mel Gibson is planning to grace our silver screens again with a sequel to The Passion of the Christ.
Gibson is working alongside screenwriter Randall Wallace. Wallace is known in the film world for being the creative mind behind the 1995 best Oscar winner Braveheart and 2014’s faith based drama Heaven Is For Real.
While the original Passion detailed the story behind Jesus’s arrest and crucifixion, the sequel will focus on chronicling the events after his resurrection.
Wallace tells The Hollywood Reporter that he was a religion major at Duke University and the resurrection was his specialty. He goes on to say, “I always wanted to tell this story. The Passion is the beginning and there’s a lot more story to tell.”
The Passion of the Christ was released in 2004 and quickly became the best selling and most successful independent movie of all time. It brought in a whopping $612 million worldwide on a paltry $30 million production budget.
Because of its success, many film critics in Hollywood predicted there would be a sequel, but Gibson moved on to other projects. At press time, Gibson’s rep declined to comment on his involvement.
So far, no studio backing has committed themselves to the project but Wallace hints that many financiers are interested in investing.
In February, Sony released Risen, which tells the story of the resurrection, even though Gibson wasn’t involved. The movie made $46 million worldwide on a $20 million budget, showcasing that Christian movies have the ability to make a lot more money than average films.
This not only draws attention to Christian films but also brings in money for the filmmakers of faith-based cinema. For those with estates valued at more than $5.43 million, or $10.86 million for a married couple, the estate is exempt from federal estate taxes; that likely applies to Gibson, Wallace, and other big names in Christian film.
Fans of Gibson and Wallace will also want to look out for Hacksaw Ridge, a film set to come out this November. Directed by Gibson and co-written by Wallace, this film details the story of the first conscientious objector to the U.S. Army to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.