最近在外國炒得挺熱的電影新聞就是由Mel Gibson製作的The Passion of the Christ，首先影片本身受到很大的爭議，說其內容有抹黑猶太人的意思，在影片評語也各走極端，連布殊也說有興趣一看此片等等新聞不絕於耳。
據發片商New Market Films表示，今天在全美各地都有許多觀眾迫不及待的趕早場，看過影片「耶穌受難記」（The Passion of the Christ）後的人對劇情的反應不一。
The Passion of the Christ Update
In its second full day in theaters, Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ held up remarkably well and grossed $14,781,316, dropping 44% from its opening day haul of $26,556,573. Take out the estimated $3M in preview grosses that were added to Wednesday’s figure, and the decline stands at a surprisingly mild 37%. By comparison, Wednesday-to-Thursday drops for other recent high-profile event films bowing on Wednesdays include 51% for The Return of the King, 57% for Star Wars Episode I, 47% for The Two Towers, and 55% for The Matrix Revolutions.
To date, Passion has collected a stunning $41.3M going into the Friday-to-Sunday weekend period with tremendous strength. That puts it in the same company as The Phantom Menace, which launched with a Wednesday-Thursday take of $40.9M leading to a five-day bow of $105.7M. Also performing in similar fashion was The Two Towers which took in $40M in its first two days capturing $102M over its five-day opening frame. At its current pace, the Jesus tale may also reach the neighborhood of $100M over its Wednesday-to-Sunday debut frame.
New Film May Harm Gibson’s Career
By SHARON WAXMAN | Published: February 26, 2004
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 25 — Mel Gibson’s provocative new film, “The Passion of
the Christ,” is making some of Hollywood’s most prominent executives uncomfortable in ways that may damage Mr. Gibson’s career.
Hollywood is a close-knit world, and friendships and social contact are critical in the making of deals and the casting of movies. Many of Hollywood’s most prominent figures are also Jewish. So with a furor arising around the film, along with Mr. Gibson’s reluctance to distance himself from his father, who calls the Holocaust mostly fiction, it is no surprise that Hollywood — Jewish and non-Jewish — has been talking about little else, at least when it’s not talking about the Oscars.
Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen, the principals of DreamWorks, have privately expressed anger over the film, said an executive close to the two men.
The chairmen of two other major studios said they would avoid working with Mr. Gibson because of “The Passion of the Christ” and the star’s remarks surrounding its release.
Neither of the chairmen would speak for attribution, but as one explained: “It doesn’t matter what I say. It’ll matter what I do. I will do something. I won’t hire him. I won’t support anything he’s part of. Personally that’s all I can do.”
The chairman said he was angry not just because of what he had read about the film and its portrayal of Jews in relation to the death of Jesus, but because of Mr. Gibson’s remarks defending his father, Hutton Gibson. Last week in a radio interview the elder Mr. Gibson repeated his contention that the Holocaust was “all — maybe not all fiction — but most of it is.” Asked about his father’s Holocaust denial in an interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC, the movie star told her to “leave it alone.”
The other studio chairman, whose family fled European anti-Semitism before the Holocaust, was less emphatic but said, “I think I can live without him.” But others said there would be no lasting backlash against Mel Gibson. “If the movie works, I don’t think it will hurt him,” said John Lesher, an agent with Endeavor. “People here will work with the anti-Christ if he’ll put butts in seats.” Mr. Lesher added, “He put his own money where his mouth is. He invested in himself.”
As Mr. Lesher implied, Hollywood is also a place of businesspeople, and Mr. Gibson is a proven movie star, popular with audiences. There are few actors with that kind of bankability, no matter their personal views. Mr. Gibson is also a capable director. So some of the initial reactions to his film may fade over time.
Mr. Gibson not only directed and helped write the $30 million film, but he also paid for it, including production and marketing costs, out of his own pocket, which Hollywood has filled.
As an actor and successful director, from “Mad Max” (1979) through “Lethal Weapon” (1987) and its sequels to the Oscar-winning “Braveheart” (1995), Mr. Gibson has long been a Hollywood pet. But he has also been known as a prankster and a self-confessed abuser of various substances. Many in the relentlessly secular movie industry see his recent religious conversion — he practices a traditionalist version of Roman Catholicism — as another form of addiction.
Last Friday the media billionaire Haim Saban, former owner of the Fox Family Channel, sent a concerned e-mail message to friends about Mr. Gibson and his father.
The message forwarded an article by the journalist Mitch Albom calling on Mr. Gibson to repudiate his father’s denial of the Holocaust. Mr. Saban sent the article to, among others, Roger Ailes, who heads Fox News; Norman Pattiz, who runs the Westwood One radio network; and Michael R. Milken, the securities felon turned philanthropist.
Amid the daily dealings of Hollywood, the film and the star have been fodder for unfavorable gossip. Dustin Hoffman has talked to friends about what he called Mr. Gibson’s “strangeness” during the ABC interview. The producer Mike Medavoy said Mr. Gibson’s religious zealotry made him feel uncomfortable. Mr. Hoffman is Jewish; Mr. Medavoy is the child of Holocaust survivors.
“One question is, `What propelled him to make the movie about the passion of Christ?’ ” Mr. Medavoy said. “It makes me a little squeamish. What makes me squeamish about religion in general is that people think they have the answer: `I think my God is the right God.’ How do you argue against that?”
But many non-Jews in Hollywood have also been unhappy about the religious divisions that the movie has exposed and could deepen. A public relations expert who usually works closely with Newmarket, which is distributing the film, said she declined to work on the film, though she is Roman Catholic. “This kind of thing tends to bring out the worst in people,” she said, insisting that her name not be used.
The director David O. Russell, who described himself as areligious, said that although he had not seen the film, he was disturbed by the prospect that “The Passion” could feed anti-Semitism. “There are so many wonderfully provocative things about Jesus’ life and death that challenge us to be better people,” he said. “If it stirs anti-Semitism, then what a wasted opportunity.”
Melisa Richter, a publicist who worked for one of the largest Christian movie production houses in the country, Cloud Ten Pictures, wrote in an e-mail message that the film “feeds into the culture of anti-Semitism that is out there, repeating it again and again in a popular format (the film medium), lacking vital historical context and background.”
Several prominent people interviewed for this article said they were curious about the film but would not buy tickets to see it.
Still, some of Mr. Gibson’s Jewish friends have been defending him and the movie. The producer Dean Devlin, who is Jewish, said, “It’s a phenomenal movie about love and forgiveness, and I personally didn’t find it anti-Semitic whatsoever.”
Mr. Devlin said that he thought those in Hollywood who were angry would get over it. “I think it’s a big issue today, as the movie is opening, but over time it will be seen as one of many beautiful renditions of the story,” he said. “My hunch is this will pass, this film will be remembered as a beautiful film, and Mel will go back to making movies. That’s my hope.”
Alan Nierob, Mr. Gibson’s publicist, is himself the child of Holocaust survivors. “I think Hollywood appreciates good art and will embrace the talent of a filmmaker,” Mr. Nierob said. “I don’t see a negative reaction.”