Mel Gibson talks to us about his latest movie

The Passion of the Christ director and Lethal Weapon actor Mel Gibson recently provided quite a few details about his latest film, Father Stu, where he plays Father Stuart Long’s father, Bill Long.

Source: Braveheart

Gibson spilled the wick to Father Dave Nix on his Padre Peregrino YouTube channel as part of his ongoing Theology and Current Affairs segment.

At the start of the interview, Gibson recounts a brief summary of Father Stu’s life, saying, “Well, he was just a guy, a tough, tumble guy. He was very good at boxing. He was like some kind of Golden Gloves champion in Montana. He led a life like most young guys, rather venial. He liked to drink, he liked to fight, he liked, you know, to go pretty much where he wanted.

Gibson continued, “And he just had a conversion experience, at one point. He met and fell in love with a young Catholic woman, then he began to explore what it meant. In the script, she says, “I can’t date someone who isn’t baptized.” And he said, ‘Well, where is the water?’ Therefore, he does not enter it with the purest motives.

Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) in Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU.

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“What he ends up doing – he had a motorcycle accident and he described some sort of out-of-body experience that happened while he was in the twilight zone,” Gibson explained. “He survived the crash, a horrific one, he got hit by one car and then he got run over by another. So they didn’t expect him to live, but he did. got out of it, and when he got out of it, he said he had to be a priest.

“And the girl was like, ‘But we were going to get married.’ And he’s like, ‘Sorry, I have to be a priest.’ And he was really sure about it and he followed that, ”he explained.

Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) in Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU.

Gibson then relayed: “And, of course, he followed that, but it wasn’t a fat ride because he also developed a disease [inclusion body myositis] it’s a bit like Lou Gehrig’s disease, ALS, it’s a bit like that, but slightly different, who ended up having it.

“But he was ordained and fulfilled his priesthood, but he was sick. He died at the age of 50, I believe. This conversion and what he was able to accomplish and tell others about the nature of suffering – he considered himself quite fortunate to have had these trials and to have been able to communicate it to others. He was an inspiration to many. And I think the movie itself and I’ve seen it is quite inspiring,” he said.

Gibson then detailed, “Yeah, I play his dad. And they were pretty agnostic as a family. One of Stuart’s triumphs, I think, was that he converted his parents before he left. And this is depicted in the film.

Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) in Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU.

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When asked how he thinks this film will affect priests and if any priests have seen it, Gibson replies, “Yes, they have seen it. They adore him. And they’re very emotionally moved and are relieved and surprised that it kind of portrays the priesthood in a very positive way.

“In most cases, that’s it. We hear about bad news. I mean there are bad apples, you know. And it’s so tragic as it has to be, but unfortunately it is. But hey, it’s not all bad apples. The majority are good guys. I think they were happy and quite moved by the film. It’s a good experience,” he said.

Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) in Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU.

Gibson went on to say, “And you don’t have to be a Christian to appreciate it either. I think the story works across the board for just about anyone who wants to see it. Because it’s about faith, belief, and relationships in families that need healing. I think you see it in there. Thus, the many people who are not even religious are moved by the film.

“It’s pretty good. She did a really good job. The director [Rosalind Ross], she wrote and directed it. And it was her first time directing, but she did a phenomenal job. It was like she was born to do it,” he said.

Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) in Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU.

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Later in the interview, Gibson will provide more details about the film, explaining, “It really displays the tenets of faith in a pretty pure way. And almost comically. The really, wonderfully surprising thing about watching the movie with an audience like I did is that they start laughing at the beginning and they really laugh a lot.

He continued, “Especially Catholics because they get the human. Because you’ve got a guy who’s a stranger asking about like – well that sounds pretty weird – he’s asking about confession being a laundry service and all that kind of stuff, which is your basic assumptions that people do that they don’t fully understand, which is kind of comical.

“So there is a lot of fun in the movie. And you laugh and you laugh and you laugh until you cry,” the director of The Passion of the Christ explained. “It works very well. The writer followed the old Shakespearean technique that if you want to do a tragedy, make the first half a comedy. And he does it very well and beautifully.

DALLAS, TX – March 4, 2022: Mark Wahlberg at a screening of Columbia Pictures’ FATHER STU at the University of Dallas with Stu’s dad, Bill Long, Stu’s best friend dad. Bart Tolleson and members of the local religious community.

Gibson went on to provide more details about Father Stu’s life, explaining, “He was quite zealous about what he found. Because I think he found peace in his life and existence and wanted to bring it to others. He was serious. And there’s footage of himself at the end of the movie, there’s actual footage of him talking.

“He was an inspiration to many. Apparently when he was about to come out, people were just queuing up to talk to him. It’s depicted in the movie. He was in high demand, incredibly and was very [generous] with his time even though he was in pain,” he concluded.

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The film’s official description reads, “Based on a true story, Father Stu is an honest, funny, and ultimately uplifting drama about a lost soul who finds purpose in a most unexpected place. When an injury ends his amateur boxing career, Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) moves to Los Angeles dreaming of stardom. While working as a supermarket worker, he meets Carmen (Teresa Ruiz), a Catholic Sunday school teacher who seems immune to his bad boy charm.

He continues: “Determined to seduce her, the lifelong agnostic begins going to church to impress her. But surviving a terrible motorcycle accident leaves him wondering if he can use his second chance to help the others to find their way, which leads him to the startling realization that he is supposed to be a Catholic priest.

“Despite a devastating health crisis and skepticism from Church officials and his estranged parents (Mel Gibson and Jacki Weaver), Stu pursues his calling with courage and compassion, inspiring not only his loved ones but countless others in the process of road,” the description concludes.

Source: Father Stu

The film was recently picked up by Sony and is set to arrive in theaters on April 13, 2022.

Are you planning on checking out Father Stu? What do you think of Gibson’s praise for the film?

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