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First Look: The Resurrection of the Christ

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Now, before you start shouting that "Oh No - Mel Gibson is at it again!" -  you should be aware that this is not a sequel to Gibson's 2004 film, The Passion of the Christ and he is in no way involved in the production.

The film will be a standalone Biblical epic that  will "focus on the power, greed and ambition of those involved in the crucifixion."

The producer  of the film Bill McKay said:

"It's as much about the key players as it is about Jesus. We want to bring in the Gladiator dimension of the first century against the political milieu of the time."

This means that some of the main characters in the film will be Pontius Pilate, Herod, Caiaphas and Judas - not your usual line of of main characters in any Biblical tale.

Screenwriter Dan Gordan (The Hurricane) will write the script and Jonas McCord will direct. McCord was previously behind the slightly odd but interesting Antonio Banderas religious film, The Body.

The $20 million production will shoot in Israel, Morocco and Europe for ten weeks this summer.

McKay went on to say:

"We think it's a very commercial film that's targeted at an under-served demographic with a lot of crossover potential."

The film is obviously hoping to bring in the same audience as Mel Gibson's violent Bible tale - with that film grossing $370 million at the domestic box office.

If done right, The Resurrection of the Christ could be a welcome addition to the long-standing Biblical epic genre, which includes films such as The Ten Commandments, Ben Hur and The Greatest Story Ever Told. My only worry is that the politics of the film could be oversimplified so that it reaches a mass audience, therefore giving it the feel of a bad made-for-television drama. It's a bit too early to worry about that, though, and I'm willing to give the film the benefit of the doubt at this early stage.

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There will be more on the film and its casting as we get it, but I don't think that Jim Caviezel fans should get their hopes up.

The Resurrection of the Christ will open worldwide on Easter 2011.

Source: Variety

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