Mel Gibson has revealed his next project, a sequel to 2004's "The Passion of the Christ" entitled "The Resurrection," may focus on one of the most hotly-debated issues in the church: Spiritual warfare.
"It's probably about three years off because it's a big subject...It's not just some chronological telling of just that event. That could be boring, and you think, 'Oh, we read that,'" Gibson told The Late Show host Stephen Colbert of what to expect from the sequel during a recent appearance. "But what are the other things around it that happened?"
In response, Colbert responded with, "I don't know if it'd be boring: God becomes man, and rises from the dead-it's never going to be a snoozer," prompting Gibson to elaborate.
"But it's predictable in that we know what happens...But what are the other things around it that happen? ... They are [bad guys]. They're in another realm ... You're going all over the place. What happened in three days?" he said.
The talk show host then pointed to Jesus descending to hell and rising from the dead in saying "There's a lot of action happening off screen in the Bible with Jesus descending into the dead. Wow."
Gibson responds, "Sure, there's a lot happening around us right now."
Earlier, Gibson told Lakewood Church pastor Joel Osteen of the difficulties of telling a Bible story from a unique angle: "You do it so that it surprises," he said. "You do it so that it enlightens. Just some kind of telling, some kind of rendering that suffices is just not good enough. It has to be dug deep for and it has to have, in its image and its sound and its visual, it has to be able to delve to places that people have never even thought before, I think, on a theological level."
Gibson first discussed making a sequel to "The Passion" during an August interview with evangelist Greg Laurie: "We're talking about that. Of course, that is a huge undertaking," the actor said of the upcoming film. "And you know, it's not the 'Passion 2.' 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."
The "Braveheart" actor told Laurie that screenwriter Randall Wallace, who directed "Heaven is for Real," is "up to the task" of writing the second film: "He is also, as well as a brilliant writer, he is a great director. He directed 'We Were Soldiers' and 'Heaven is for Real' and stuff. So, he is a good writer and director."
The news comes on the heels of the release of Gibson's latest film, "Hacksaw Ridge." The R-rated film, which hit theaters today, tells the real-life story of the late World War II U.S. Army medic Desmond Doss, a devout Seventh-day Adventist who despite being brutally challenged for his faith, refused to bear arms or kill in the Battle of Okinawa.
The film has received rave reviews from both Christian and secular critics, with the NY Daily News suggesting it "may be miracle that rehabilitates his Hollywood career."