Actor Jim Caviezel opens up about the rejection he faced from Hollywood after his role as Jesus Christ, in Mel Gibson's biblical epic "The Passion of the Christ."
"All of the sudden I stopped being one of five most popular actors in the studio, and I hadn't done anything wrong. I just played Jesus," the actor told Polish journalist and film critic Lukasz Adamski in a recent interview.
Adding, "Was I personally affected by this rejection? Well, everyone has their cross to bear. The world changes ... but I will not be in this world forever. Neither will the producers from Hollywood. At some point, everyone will have to answer for what they have done."
"The Passion of the Christ," released in 2004, was a blockbuster success, despite its lack of industry support, earning a staggering $612 million worldwide. With a production budget of just $30 million the commercial success was the highest grossing faith-based film in history.
The film received three Oscar nominations at the 77th Academy Awards but was awarded none.
The 48-year-old actor has no regrets. He has since appeared in the hit TV show "Person of Interest," and believes he was meant to play the role of Jesus Christ at the age of 33 because he shared the same age and initials of Jesus during the time of Christ death.
"Don't you tell me it was a coincidence! There are no coincidences. I keep hearing about 'accidents' and 'strokes of luck.' Secularization affects the entire world, including the USA. Only atheists believe in coincidence," Caviezel stated.
"There are no coincidences for God. Even when God resurrects the dead, they will say it happened by accident."
Following the release of "The Passion of the Christ" the film's megastar director, Mel Gibson, also faced his share of rejection. He has been working on his own independent film projects ever since and while he may have lost favor with the studios and found himself losing work after his drunk driving arrest in 2006, the tide has turned for Gibson. His latest film "Hacksaw Ridge" nabbed six Oscar nominations.
The movie is based on World War II hero Desmond Doss who served in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle in the Pacific and miraculously saved 75 men without firing a shot.
Shane Black, director of one of Gibson's most legendary films, "Lethal Weapon," said that the talented 61 year old had in fact been "blacklisted" after "The Passion of the Christ" and his arrest.
"I think he's essentially been blacklisted in the industry," Black told Business Insider in 2015. "I think people don't want to work with him."
But now, 10 years after Gibson's DUI charges on the Pacific Coast Highway in California, things are looking up.
Gibson received much praise and a "best director" Academy Award nomination for his work on "Hacksaw Ridge." The film also made over $160 million at the box office worldwide.
Caviezel shared that given the opportunity, he'd work with Gibson again. He said he would love to play a part in Gibson's planned "The Passion of the Christ" sequel, which will follow the Gospel stories after the resurrection.
This article was originally published in The Christian Post.