‘Passion of the Christ’ Sequel: Jim Caviezel in Talks to Return as Jesus

The second coming of Mel Gibson's The Passion of Jesus Christ might be here sooner than you thought. Tentatively titled The Resurrection, Jim Caviezel is reportedly in talks for a reprisal of his title role.

Entertainment Weekly reports that the 49-year-old actor is planning to resurrect his role for the sequel to Gibson's 2004 Oscar-nominated film, which chronicled the final 12 days of Jesus Christ's life before his crucifixion.

"It's probably about three years off, because it's a big subject," Gibson told Stephen Colbert of the film during a November 2016 interview. "It's more than [the] single event [in the title], it's an amazing event…. And to underpin that with the things around it is really the story. To sort of enlighten what that means. It's not just about the event; it's not just some chronological telling of just that event. That could be boring, and you think, 'Oh, we read that.' "

Gibson also confirmed that the sequel could take some liberties with the source material.

"What are the other things around it that happened? … They're in another realm. Sure, you're going all over the place. What happened in three days?" Gibson said, adding to "get your imagination going."

Not only will the film possibly have both Gibson and Caviezel, but it will also have Passion's writer and Braveheart scribe Randall Wallace, who told The Hollywood Reporter in 2016 that he is working on "a huge and sacred subject."

Despite middling reviews from critics, Passion was a smash hit at the box office, raking in a massive $370 million domestically and a further $241 million overseas for a global haul of just under $612 million.

Passion marked a high point in the career of Caviezel, who has appeared primarily in smaller projects following the film's success. His most recent project, Paul, Apostle of Christ (out March 28), is also adapted from a Biblical story.

Fans shouldn't expect the film for at least a couple of years, if Gibson's statement from 2016 still rings true. Meanwhile, the upcoming musical Jesus Christ Superstar Live! in Concert recently announced that Sara Bereilles will be joining the cast as Mary Magdalene.

Other stand-out cast members include John Legend as Jesus and Alice Cooper as King Herod.

Bareilles is currently appearing in Waitress, another Broadway musical — which she wrote the music for, nonetheless.

"We're overjoyed to have Sara Bareilles play Mary Magdalene and I can guarantee that her interpretation of the standard 'I Don't Know How to Love Him' will become an instant classic," NBC Chairman Robert Greenblatt said in a statement. "I was lucky enough to see Sara in 'Waitress' and she gave as moving and as beautifully sung a performance as I've seen on a Broadway stage in a long time."

"To say I'm excited about this performance is the understatement of the century," Bareilles said in a statement. "This score and this musical have been a part of me from a very young age and it will be one of the great thrills of my life to sing these iconic songs. It's incredible to see the beloved medium of musical theatre being embraced by television audiences, and this cast and creative team is extraordinary. I feel extremely lucky to be a part of the project!"


Jesus Christ Superstar Live! will air April 1 on NBC.

Photo credit: Newmarket Films