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Mel Gibson: Passion?

In 2002, Mel Gibson announced plans to direct a curious film about the last twelve hours of Jesus Christ's life. Though he denied that its unusual nature would not deter prospective viewers, he admitted that the film's distributors disagreed. "They think I'm insane," Gibson explained. "Maybe I am or maybe I'm a genius."

The problem? The film, to be entitled The Passion, would be shot in Latin and Aramaic -- without subtitles!

["Hopefully I'll be able to transcend language barriers with filmic storytelling," he declared. "It's very visual and it's about something that has affected civilisation in every possible way you can imagine." Gibson later said the film had been directed by the Holy Ghost. He also relented and included subtitles, in part to address charges of anti-Semitism by showing that some of the Jews portrayed in the film are sympathetic figures.]

[In a bid to keep it up to date, the Vatican regularly adds new terms to the Latin language. Among the recent additions? 'Universalis destructionis armamenta' (weapons of mass destruction), 'orbium phonographicorum theca' (discotheque), and 'conformitatis osor' (hater of conformity, or hippie). The Latin for hot dog? Pastillum botello fartum!]

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