Mel Gibson to Produce Film on The Maccabees? (And Why I Hope He Does)

Mel Gibson has had a rough several years.

After an anti-semitic rant he unleashed during a DUI arrest in 2006 he seemed to spiral out of control, divorcing his wife of 26 years and taking up with a Russian woman half his age (fathering a child with her), only to separate from her after she claims he abused and threatened to kill her. Mel is clearly still wrestling with his personal demons.

Meanwhile, artistically, he may be about to revisit his biblical movie roots:

It’s a project that will have everybody in Hollywood and beyond talking. I’ve learned that Warner Bros has set up an untitled drama that teams Gibson and screenwriter Joe Eszterhas on the telling of the heroic story of Jewish warrior Judah Maccabee. Eszterhas will write the script, and I understand that Gibson will collaborate with him.

… Gibson has the first option to direct but will definitely produce the film through his Icon Productions banner. —Deadline New York

Icon Productions was the banner Gibson used to produce The Passion of the Christ.

Rumors about Gibson taking up The Maccabees story have been floating around for a long time. I reported on the possibility over three years ago.

The added tragedy of Gibson’s serious failings and mistakes is that it has robbed us of the best possibility for a revival of biblically-based movies – The Passion of the Christ could have been the first of many remakes of biblical stories told in a modern, compelling way. I continue to pray that Gibson finds healing, and in the process, I hope he is able to reignite this genre which has been neglected too long.



  • Hadassah

    Chances are the movie will be historically inaccurate and as far from Jewish as possible. But it may well be entertaining, for those who like epic movies with big bloody battles. According to Alex Joffe, “Gibson’s most iconic characters have been damaged loners who are roused by adversity to lead against-the-odds battles against injustice.” ( So the movie might be pretty good, if you don’t compare it to the real historical story or look for theological undertones.

  • mam

    Saying Gibson has failings and has made mistakes is the understatement of the year. Although we cannot know his soul, objectively the things he has done are grievous sins and very hypocritical. And just because someone has a mental illness doesn’t mean he gets free license to do whatever he pleases. Nor do I agree with the extreme violence in his films. I will not be seeing any films made by him no matter what the subject matter. Yes, we all sin but the level of corruption with Gibson is indeed scandalous.



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