Actor Jim Caviezel is claiming that, after playing Jesus in Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ, he has become somewhat of an outcast in Hollywood. Judging by movies like Outlander and The Stoning of Soraya M., he may not be exaggerating.
Caviezel was in Florida over the weekend, promoting his new audio book of the Bible, Words of Promise, and told the 14,000-capacity First Baptist Church of Orlando that director Mel Gibson had warned him, "You'll never work in this town again," referring to Caviezel taking on the role. And his apparent rejoinder was, "We all have to embrace our crosses."
Caviezel was gaining a reputation as an emerging talent after appearing in movies like The Thin Red Line, Frequency, and The Count of Monte Cristo. Then he teamed up with Gibson for The Passion, and though the film ended up making a mint, controversy surrounding the perceived anti-semitism of the movie ended up attaching a stigma to the production, as well as to Gibson, whose later antics would not exactly change that perception.
The forty-three-year-old Caviezel, a Roman Catholic, seems to be laying the blame for Angel Eyes, with Jennifer Lopez, squarely on the man who has a lethal weapon for a mouth. He told the church crowd, "Mel Gibson, he's a horrible sinner, isn't he? Mel Gibson doesn't need your judgment, he needs your prayers." But is Caviezel being overdramatic by saying, "in my thirty-third year I was called to play Jesus?" You know, because mental patients say that too? Whatever the reason for Caviezel's alleged shunning, I pray the audio-book money keeps him on his feet until his next decent script.