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Sunday, August 27, 2006

Apocalypto in the news - August 27th Edition

A collection of quotations about Apocalypto, taken from various news portals:
  • "...Regardless of whether or not the prophecy comes true, it makes for interesting reading and filming. The collapse of the Mayan civilisation will be the subject of Mel Gibson's new film, Apocalypto..." - The Northern Echo
  • "I want to see "Apocalypto," a film with the potential to kill Gibson's career or rehabilitate it (artistically speaking)." - Kansas City Star

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson

Thursday, August 24, 2006

ApocalyptoWatch passes 50,000 page views

We're happy to announce that ApocalyptoWatch has received well over 50,000 page views since launching this January. Thank you to all the devoted readers and tip providers who continue to make ApocalyptoWatch the #1 information page on the web for news and rumors related to Mel Gibson's next movie.

Keep it tuned right here because we are planning several exciting content updates in the next weeks.

And for those who may be interested, premium advertisements and standard advertisements are now available on the sidebar through BlogAds. So act now to secure your spot before the rush begins!

Apocalypto in the news - August 24th Edition

A collection of quotations about Apocalypto, taken from various news portals:
  • "Jodie Foster, Sigourney Weaver and pop star Pink are among those who have leapt to his [Mel Gibson's] defence, helping dampen public criticism and boosting publicity for his new film, Apocalypto" -
  • "Word spreads that Disney is also trying to dump Gibson's next film Apocalypto, about the Mayan empire, but the studio insists it will still distribute the picture." - Time Magazine
  • "Though much of the plot remains under wraps, we know the film involves a young Mayan warrior struggling to save his family as his civilization faces extinction. Though Mel Gibson's drunk-driving arrest and anti-Semitic remarks have damaged his reputation, they might prove a smart publicity move." - IFC TV

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Mel Gibson pleads no contest, gets probation

TMZ reports:

TMZ has learned Mel Gibson's lawyer went to the Malibu Courthouse Thursday and appeared with the prosecutor to reveal a plea deal. Gibson has agreed to three years probation, but will avoid jail time. Gibson was ordered to attend one year of AA meetings. For the first four-and-a-half months he must attend five times a week. For the remainder of the time, he must attend three times a week. Gibson must also pay $1200 in fines and penalties as well as one hundred dollars in restitution.

Gibson volunteered to do a public service announcement on the hazards of driving under the influence. He also volunteered to enter a rehab program immediately.

Under the deal, Gibson pleaded no contest to the misdemeanor of driving with a .08 blood alcohol level or higher. The misdemeanor count of driving under the influence was dismissed. The infraction of driving with an open container of alcohol was also dismissed. [More...]

Mel did not appear at the court during the plea bargain.

Reuters adds more:

"This was an appropriate outcome which addresses all the public safety concerns of drinking and driving," Deputy District Attorney Gina Satriano said in a written statement.
Mel's publicist, Alan Nierob, has not yet been available for comment.

More from the Associated Press:

"Court documents said Gibson has already voluntarily begun rehabilitation."

"The actor's arraignment had been scheduled for next month but his attorney requested that it be moved up, and a judge agreed, the Los Angeles County district attorney's office said."

It looks like Mel is continuing to put his life back together. Also, the terms of the probation should not effect his ability to continue working on Apocalypto.

[Discuss this post in the ApocalyptoWatch forums!]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, DUI, plea, Lawrence Mira, Gina Satriano, Blair Berk

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

"Mel's star still shines brightly, US poll shows"

From the Sun-Herald:

Mel Gibson's drunken anti-Semitic rant has done little to tarnish his Hollywood star, with Walt Disney announcing it will still distribute his new film Apocalypto.

A Walt Disney spokeswoman yesterday rejected reports that the family-oriented company would offload distribution rights to another studio in order to distance itself from the controversy.


Fans too remain behind Gibson. A Fox News poll has found that one in two Americans have a favourable opinion of Gibson, and most say the incident would not impact on their decision to see one of his movies. [more.]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson

Sunday, August 13, 2006

More details emerge about Apocalypto's musical score

Some first-hand information on James Horner's musical score for Apocalypto:

From (10/08/06):

Movie "wrangling" almost complete.

I have lately been "wrangling" for a forthcoming Mel Gibson movie.This means that I am charged with the task of assembling the, somewhat specialist, musicians from several corners of the globe.

I also have to, as I did with "Troy", procure strange and exotic instruments including, for example, a Tromba Marina. The name may imply that it's some kind of deep-sea trumpet but, in fact, it's a stringed instrument, popular in Medieval Europe until it fell into obsolescence in the eighteenth century.

You play it with a bow and the vibrating string passes over a "floating bridge", which rattles against the soundboard making a noise like - a deep-sea trumpet!This, along with sets of Swedish bark trumpets and Ugandan wildebeest horns, have come from the kind musicians at the "Shakespeares' Globe" theatre in Southwark, London.

In addition to myself, with my usual arsenal of ethnic instruments, there will be Bob White, Jan Hendrickse and Guo Yi, all possessed of equally formidable equipment. Gary Kettel and Frank Ricotti, on drums , will finally ensure that the cavernous Studio 1 at Abbey Road will have no floor space for the duration.

I have also contacted Rahat Fateh Ali Khan in Pakistan, who will be singing and, as I mentioned earlier, composer James Horner has asked me to find an Ethiopian female singer, hence the "wrangling almost complete" tag.

The movie, by the way, is called "Apocalypto", and is set in Pre-Columbian Central America. I'm told that all the dialogue is in Mayan, hence the orchestra-free primitive style approach to the score from James.

Thanks to ApocalyptoWatch Forums member Antineutrino for the tip, as well as ApocalyptoWatch reader Michael who says:
"The biggest news here is that the score will be recorded in London. I heard elsewhere that the date is October 06. Furthermore, a bit of a surprise is Horner's apparent 'orchestra-free' approach for such a visual epic. Let's see how this is gonna turn out."
We agree. It should be interesting!

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, James Horner, Tony Hinnigan

Friday, August 11, 2006

Disney: We will distribute Mel Gibson's 'Apocalypto'

It's official:

LOS ANGELES - The Walt Disney Co. will distribute "Apocalypto," a Mayan-language film by actor-director Mel Gibson, as planned on Dec. 8, a Walt Disney Studios spokeswoman said Friday.

That confirmation refutes recent media and Internet reports that family-oriented Disney wanted to sell distribution rights to the film to another studio to distance itself from the controversy over anti-Semitic remarks Gibson made when he was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving last month in Malibu, California.

"It's not true," Disney spokeswoman Heidi Trotta said of the reports. [source.]

So, just to recap: Roger Friedman of FOX News was wrong and Apocalypto will be distributed by Disney. Just as we said it would.

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Roger Friedman, Heidi Trotta

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Follow-up: TMZ reports Apocalypto NOT being "shopped around"

TMZ Reports:

Well, who knows what's really going on, but for now, it's all vigorous denials from Disney and Lions Gate about any change in the status of Mel Gibson's new film, "Apocalypto."

Despite a report from Fox News columnist Roger Friedman ("Mel Gibson's New Movie 'Being Shopped' ") a Disney spokesman, Heidi Trotta, tells TMZ unequivocally that the Friedman report is "absolutely not true."

Our own sources within Lions Gate Films also say they've not had a single conversation about acquiring the film, and at Paramount's edgy Vantage, label insiders told us they've not even considered taking Gibson's movie off the Mouse House's hands, let alone been approached. [More...]

We've long said here at AW that Disney is very unlikely to dump Apocalypto. Early unconfirmed reports (prior to Mel's DUI) said that Disney was pleased with how Apocalypto was looking after production finished in Veracruz.

[Discuss this post now in the ApocalyptoWatch Forums!]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Roger Friedman, TMZ

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Rumor: Apocalypto being "shopped around"

From Roger Friedman of FOX News:

Mel Gibson's movie "Apocalypto," which Disney was supposed to release on Dec. 8, is "being shopped" to other potential distributors, sources tell me.

One potential distributor for "Apocalypto" is Lions Gate, an independent company with a history of rescuing distressed projects. In the past they've picked up Kevin Smith's "Dogma" and Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 911" when Miramax was prevented from putting them out by their own agreements with Disney. [full article.]

Update: DrudgeReport is following this story. Other people are adding their two cents:

We'll continue to follow this story. Right now the rumor is only based on Roger Friedman's hollywood sources - so take everything with a large grain of salt.

Update 2: TMZ reports that this report is false and that Disney has no plans to drop Apocalypto.

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Roger Friedman

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Apocalypto originally planned to be released today

Apocalypto was originally planned to be released today - August 8th.

However, due to severe storms around the Veracruz set, the movie's release date was postponed until December 8th (the decision to change the release date had nothing to do with Mel Gibson's recent DUI arrest).

That said, we have four more months before Apocalypto opens. So stay here at ground zero for all the latest Apocalypto news and updates!

- The ApocalyptoWatch Team

Monday, August 07, 2006

Video: Jackie Mason defends Mel Gibson on Fox's Your World with Neil Cavuto

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Jackie Mason, Neil Cavuto

Sunday, August 06, 2006


Photo: REUTERS/Fred Prouser

Rabbi Daniel Lapin on Mel Gibson and anti-semitism

From Rabbi Daniel Lapin:

By now the whole world knows that the L.A. County Sheriff's Department reports that after being stopped for drunk driving early Friday morning, Mel Gibson, began yelling about the "blanking" Jews who start all the wars in the world.

Within a few hours Gibson publicly admitted that he had "...said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable. I am deeply ashamed of everything I said, and I apologize to anyone who I have offended."

Immediately thereafter, one of the self-anointed Jewish "leaders" proclaimed with breathtaking chutzpah, that Mel Gibson's apology is unremorseful and insufficient. "It's not a proper apology because it does not go to the essence of his bigotry and his anti-Semitism," he said. "We would hope that Hollywood now would realize the bigot in their midst and that they will distance themselves from this anti-Semite."

It is all too easy to join the circling hyenas and denounce Gibson while he is down. On the other hand, though he has provided some financial support to Toward Tradition, I don't feel obliged to leap to his defense. That is not the purpose behind my writing this column. The purpose of my writing this account is to respond to the question of how recent events have impacted my views of the man and his work. It is also to place a gentle restraining hand upon the shoulder of those in the Jewish community making yet another mistake. [full article.]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Daniel Lapin

Saturday, August 05, 2006

"Gibson's Career Not Ruined, Reporter Says" - AP

From the Associated Press:

LOS ANGELES -- Film industry people could turn their backs on Mel Gibson socially, but the Hollywood Reporter's Gregg Kilday said Saturday that it won't be the actor's fate on the business side.

Kilday said that as an actor, producer and director, Gibson has become a kind of movie industry unto himself.

He said the perfect example is Gibson's 2004 film, "The Passion of the Christ."

Gibson's own company, Icon, financed the project for $30 million. Gibson produced and directed the picture, and it made $600 million.

If Gibson did go outside his own company with what looked like a sure money-maker, Kilday said, it is unlikely that anyone would turn him down.

As for the social side, Kilday said that if Gibson follows up on his apologies, Hollywood will forgive.

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Gregg Kilday

POTD: Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster

"In this file photo originally provided by NBC, a bearded Mel Gibson makes a surprise appearance Sept. 22, 2005, on 'The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,' in Burbank, Calif. Gibson carried show guest Jodie Foster onto the stage. Several of Gibson's Hollywood friends defended the actor the wake of Gibson's alleged anti-Jewish tirade when he arrested for drunken driving July 28. 'Is he an anti-Semite? Absolutely not,' Foster told the Los Angeles Times for a story Friday, Aug. 4, 2006. 'But it's no secret that he has always fought a terrible battle with alcoholism.' (AP Photo/NBC, Margaret Norton)"

Friday, August 04, 2006

"Several Hollywood friends defend Mel Gibson" - AP

The Associated Press reports:

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Several of Mel Gibson's friends say he's a "different person" when he's drinking, but they do not believe he's anti-Semitic.

Movie producer Dean Devlin said he and his wife are Jewish, and he considers Gibson - who unleashed an anti-Jewish tirade when arrested for drunken driving July 28 - one of his best friends in Hollywood.

"If Mel is an anti-Semite, then he spends a lot of time with us, which makes no sense," Devlin told the Los Angeles Times. He met Gibson while co-producing The Patriot, in which Gibson starred. "But he is an alcoholic, and while that makes no excuse for what he said, because there is no excuse, I believe it was the disease speaking, not the man."

Jodie Foster said she does not believe that drunkenness excuses hurtful remarks, but doubts claims that Gibson is prejudiced against Jews.

"Is he an anti-Semite? Absolutely not," Foster told the newspaper for a story in Friday's editions. "But it's no secret that he has always fought a terrible battle with alcoholism."

Though it was widely believed that Gibson has been sober since the early '90s, some people close to him say he has been on and off the wagon for years.

"I have been with Mel when he has fallen off, and he becomes a completely different person," Devlin said. "It is pretty horrifying."

Gibson was charged this week with two misdemeanor counts of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Foster, who co-starred with Gibson in Maverick, said she believed he will recover from his latest fall.

Gibson "was a shining example of how low you can go when you are young and still pull yourself up," she said. "He took his recovery very seriously, which is why I know he is strong enough to get through this now." [source.]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster

AW Forum: "official" thread for discussion related to Mel Gibson's DUI and anti-semitic remarks

Click here for the "official" thread for discussion related to this topic.

Here are some helpful links for news and information:

Join the discussion now!

Update: The ApocalyptoWatch Forums will be receiving a general update in the near future.

Apocalypto in the news - August 3rd Edition

A collection of quotations about Apocalypto, taken from various online news portals today:

  • "Arianna Huffington, of the eponymous, urged Disney studios to scrap plans to distribute Gibson's next film "Apocalypto."
  • UK Guardian Unlimited: "A survey of US public and film industry views suggests that the 50-year-old could turn the bad publicity to his advantage, just in time to plug his latest film Apocalypto."
  • GetReligion: "However, there are factual questions, public questions that can be asked.
    What is the status of Gibson's controversial Mayan movie, Apocalypto? He should be editing it right now, since it remains unfinished. Media reports indicate that he is in an outpatient program."
  • The UK Times Online: "...what happens if Apocalypto does the same kind of business as The Passion, and Gibson starts hiring for ten new projects? Is anyone seriously going to pass on that new Aston Martin or that new pad in the Hollywood Hills just to protest against racist comments made by an alcoholic at 2.30am outside a bar, for which the alcoholic in question has long ago apologised and undergone rehab?"

[Discuss this post in the Apocalypto Watch Forum now!]

Dr. Phil voices his opinion on Mel's comments

TMZ Reports:

Dr. Phil expressed some dismay Wednesday night about the harsh criticism against Mel Gibson for his anti-Semitic rant during his arrest.

The good doctor, who appeared on "The Tonight Show," told Jay Leno: "I don't know what [Gibson] really thinks or feels."

Dr. Phil added: "I certainly wouldn't judge a guy based on one comment in a drunken stupor on the side of the road at 2 o'clock in the morning."

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Dr. Phil

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Mauricio Amuy defends Mel Gibson on Extra

TMZ reports:

One of the stars of Mel Gibson's "Apocalypto" has come to the director's defense, saying the Gibson involved in the recent DUI arrest and anti-Semitic remarks is not the Mel he knows.

Mauricio Amuy Tenorio, a former model who stars as a Mayan chief in the film, tells "EXTRA" in an exclusive interview that the Gibson scandal has taken him by complete surprise. "I don't have the right to judge what he did," he says.

Tenorio also says he never heard anti-Semitic remarks from Gibson while on the film set in Mexico. "I don't want to say that he's anti-Jewish," he says.

"Apocalypto," filmed in the state of Veracruz, is scheduled to open in theaters December 8. Check local listings for "EXTRA" show times.

Read our introduction to Mauricio Amuy here.

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson, Mauricio Amuy

James Horner composes news theme for Katie Couric

From KSBW 8:

LOS ANGELES -- CBS has brought in a Hollywood heavy hitter to pen a new news theme for Katie Couric.

According to Variety, "Titanic" Oscar winner James Horner has composed a new theme for the "CBS Evening News." The magazine said that the theme will eventually be integrated into all of the network's newscasts.

The "Evening News" producer told The Hollywood Reporter that the music is "memorable" and "it fits us."


Horner won Oscars for Best Original Score and Best Original Song for "My Heart Will Go On" (along with Will Jennings) in 1997 for James Cameron's "Titanic."

He's also been nominated for writing the scores for "Aliens," "Apollo 13," "Braveheart," "A Beautiful Mind," "House of Sand and Fog" and "Field of Dreams."

Horner also penned the score for embattled filmmaker Mel Gibson's upcoming historical adventure "Apocalypto." [source]

Photo: AP Image

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Katie Couric, James Horner

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Daily Show takes a look at Mel Gibson media coverage

A small comical interlude before we return to our regular reporting:

FLASH: Mel Gibson charged with misdemeanor DUI

AP News Alert:

Prosecutors have charged Mel Gibson with misdemeanor drunken driving, having an elevated blood-alcohol level and having an open container of liquor in his car.

... Arraignment was set for Sept. 28 in Malibu Superior Court.

If convicted, Gibson faces up to six months in jail, the district attorney's office said. [source.]

More details:

"The ball is now in his [Gibson's]court whether he is going to ask for a trial," said district attorney's spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons.

She said Gibson does not have to appear for his arraignment and can have a lawyer appear for him instead.

First-time misdemeanor drunken driving offenders usually face minimal, if any, time behind bars.

If convicted, it would be up to the judge to determine if Gibson would have to serve any time, Gibbons said.

"They might count the time he spent in custody as time served," she said. [source.]

Disney Studios: Apocalypto will be released as planned

From TimeOut London:
Walt Disney Studios announced that 'Apocalypto', the director's forthcoming feature about the end of Mayan civilization, will be released as planned on December 8.
We'll try to find a better source for this claim.

Update: "Apocalypto has completed filming and is currently in post-production," Disney studio spokeswoman Heidi Trotta said [in a statement released Tuesday]. "The film will be released as scheduled." - MarketWatch

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Disney

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

"Review committee says no apparent favoritism to Mel Gibson" - AP

From the Associated Press:

LOS ANGELES An independent committee says an initial review of Mel Gibson's arrest showed no favoritism toward the star by the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department.

Michael Gennaco of the Office of Independent Review says the arresting officer followed procedures. Gibson was stopped, given sobriety tests and arrested.

He also says the officer has the discretion not to use handcuffs. Gibson was not initially handcuffed after being stopped.

Anti-Semitic remarks Gibson made during the arrest process are included in a supplemental report. Gennaco says it was always intended to be sent to the district attorney.

He says the department is looking into the disclosure of the statements.

The review continues. [source]

Technorati Tags: Apocalypto, Mel Gibson

Breaking: Mel apologizes directly to Jews for Anti-Semitic remarks

Here is Mel Gibson's full statement (Reuters has a short summary):

There is no excuse, nor should there be any tolerance, for anyone who thinks or expresses any kind of anti-Semitic remark. I want to apologize specifically to everyone in the Jewish community for the vitriolic and harmful words that I said to a law enforcement officer the night I was arrested on a DUI charge.

I am a public person, and when I say something, either articulated and thought out, or blurted out in a moment of insanity, my words carry weight in the public arena. As a result, I must assume personal responsibility for my words and apologize directly to those who have been hurt and offended by those words.

The tenets of what I profess to believe necessitate that I exercise charity and tolerance as a way of life. Every human being is God's child, and if I wish to honor my God I have to honor his children. But please know from my heart that I am not an anti-Semite. I am not a bigot. Hatred of any kind goes against my faith.

I'm not just asking for forgiveness. I would like to take it one step further, and meet with leaders in the Jewish community, with whom I can have a one on one discussion to discern the appropriate path for healing.

I have begun an ongoing program of recovery and what I am now realizing is that I cannot do it alone. I am in the process of understanding where those vicious words came from during that drunken display, and I am asking the Jewish community, whom I have personally offended, to help me on my journey through recovery.

Again, I am reaching out to the Jewish community for its help. I know there will be many in that community who will want nothing to do with me, and that would be understandable. But I pray that that door is not forever closed.

This is not about a film. Nor is it about artistic license. This is about real life and recognizing the consequences hurtful words can have. It's about existing in harmony in a world that seems to have gone mad.

Report: Mel Gibson was "really on the verge of suicide"?!

An exclusive report has been filed by Deadline Hollywood, which if true, is so significant that we are reproducing the full text:

Nikki Finke reports: "I'm told by a source intimate with his situation tonight that Mel Gibson "was really on the verge of suicide because he felt he was helpless to alcohol and didn't know what to do about it. That's why he was driving around 90 miles an hour. This was a death wish. If that cop hadn't stopped him, this guy was going to be wrapped around a pole."

"This is such a bigger issue than 'Will he work again?' This is about his not wanting to live anymore. I've seen what he's gone through and what he's going through. You have to understand the disease of alcoholism. He was back in it. There's no doubt in my mind he was trying to kill himself that night."

As for his anti-Semitic slurs during his DUI arrest, I'm told that Gibson doesn't remember saying them. "Why? He had alcoholic blackout syndrome. I don't know a lot about it. I've not had a lot of experience with it. He has some recollection of parts of the evenings. But he's not denying he said those things, and if anything he's owning up to it. But nobody could verify it. Not even he or his lawyers have seen the police report yet."

The insider called Gibson's situation "tragic. It's not about what people are focusing on, understand that. This is Mel Gibson. He can do whatever he wants. He has all the money in world. He has a wonderful family. He has a wonderful wife.' They're not thinking about the real issue here: alcoholism. Nobody is talking about his alcoholism." [source.]

Keeping in mind that this report hasn't been confirmed ... if you take another look at Mel Gibson's mugshot - doesn't that look like someone who has just been through a traumatic experience and isn't that the smile of someone who is very happy to still be alive? You can see how bloodshot his eyes are. That could be from alcohol, but it could also be from crying tears...

The final piece of the puzzle? Mel's own words from his statement: "I take this opportunity to apologize to the deputies involved for my belligerent behavior. They have always been there for me in my community and indeed probably saved me from myself."

(I offer this idea only as a personal opinion. Please judge the report for yourself.)