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The Passion of the Christ

Trivia: Jim Caviezel was struck by lightning while filming the Sermon On The Mount scene.

Trivia: Satan is actually played by a woman - the Italian actress Rosalinda Celentano.

Trivia: During filming, Jim Caviezel (Jesus) was accidentally whipped in the back, and since the crew were filming, his real reactions were incorporated for his role onscreen.

Trivia: Is the highest-grossing ($370 million) R-rated film in North American box office history, breaking the previous record held by "The Matrix Reloaded" (2003).

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Trivia: Mel Gibson filmed the scene where Pilate is offering to release either Barabbas or Jesus and Pilate says "why do you want to crucify Jesus, he has done nothing wrong" (paraphrased) and the people shout, "Give us Barabbas, let His (Jesus) blood be on our children" which is taken directly from the gospel of Matthew; however, Gibson deleted the subtitle for the line because he felt it would fuel anti-Semitism.

Trivia: The hand that draws the line in the sand during Mary Magdalene's flashback is Mel Gibson's.

Trivia: Jim Caviezel's (Jesus) eyes were digitally color-changed to brown, and he wore a prosthetic nose piece to make him look more Hebrew.

Trivia: With box office receipts of over $370 million (as of September 5, 2004), "The Passion" has become the highest-grossing religious-themed film of all time.

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Trivia: In that grisly scene where Jesus is being flogged, Jim Caviezel stated that he was actually struck twice. The first time knocked the wind out of him, and left a 14 inch scar on his back. The second time hurt so badly that is caused him to wrench his hand from the shackle, scraping his wrist. What with also getting struck by lightning in a different scene, he wasn't exactly undertested for the role.

Trivia: James Caviezel's initials are JC (like Jesus Christ), and was 33 years old around the time of the film's shooting, about the same age Jesus when he was crucified.

Trivia: Maia Morgenstern read the script for the movie 200 times before filming.

Trivia: Until October 2003, the film was originally called "The Passion" until Mel Gibson found that Miramax owns the rights to that name (from a romantic fantasy book), so he decided to add "of Christ" to it. Then a month latter, Gibson added an additional "the" between "of" and "Christ" which makes it "The Passion of the Christ," the title which was released in theaters.

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Trivia: The movie apparently has some beneficial effects as well, for there are at least two real-life cases in which a murderer and a Neo-nazi terrorist have turned themselves over to the police after having watched this movie.

Trivia: Maia Morgenstern plays Jim Caviezel's mother in the movie, even though in real life she's only six years older than him.

Trivia: A robotic Jesus is used for some of the more graphic parts of the crucifixion.

Trivia: Not only is the film the highest-grossing R-rated film of all time in North America, it was the first to pass the $300 million mark on March 24, 2004. However, it is only second ($609 million) to 2003's "The Matrix Reloaded" ($739 million) as the highest-grossing R-rated film worldwide.

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Trivia: Before an Israeli arthouse theater decided to screen the film in Israel, no theater in the country was willing to show it because of the anti-Semitism controversy.

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Trivia: Is currently the fastest major theatrical film to earn back its production and marketing costs ($55 million in three days). It is also the fastest film to earn a profit (grossing over the $110 million threshold within five days), since a film needs to earn twice the production and marketing costs to make a profit.

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Trivia: There is a 15 cert cut of this movie with parts of the flogging and crucifixion scenes removed to make it slightly more palatable.

Trivia: Aside from being struck by lightning and a scourge, accidentally, Jim Caveziel also suffered from hypothermia during the filming of the crucifixion.

Trivia: Contrary to earlier media reports, Pope John Paul II never publicly endorsed the film after receiving a private screening of it.

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Trivia: The film has become the highest grossing foreign-language film in North America, grossing more than Cantonese-language film "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" (2000).

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Trivia: Mel Gibson wanted originally to present this film without subtitles until negative responses to the radical idea from potential distributors compelled him to change his mind.

Trivia: As a rarity for a dramatic film, there is no disclaimer that states it is a work of fiction and that the characters resembling actual people are coincidence.

Trivia: As of September 5, 2004, the film has become the highest-grossing independent (not owned by a major Hollywood studio) film of all time, surpassing "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" (2003).

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Trivia: Director/producer Mel Gibson wanted the film to look like the paintings from the Italian baroque painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1573-1610). The artist is known for works marked by intense realism and revolutionary use of light. His best work is the "Deposition of Christ" (1604).

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Trivia: There is a lot of debate about where the nails went during crucifixion, through the palms or the wrists. In the film, director Mel Gibson chose the palms. The Shroud of Turin has the nails through the wrists and skeletal remains (mentioned in books about the Shroud) had the nail through the wrist also.

Trivia: According to the movie's official web site, 40% of the film was shot at night or indoors under wraps.

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Trivia: James Caviezel spent between four to eight hours in the makeup chair each shooting day transforming into his role as Jesus.

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Trivia: The hand holding the nail as it is being driven into Christ's hand is none other then director Mel Gibson's.

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Mistakes

When Jesus tells Peter to stop fighting against the temple guards when in the garden, you can see the background behind him: a small tree by a large one. The shot cuts to Peter and then back to Jesus telling him to again stop. The background is now reversed.

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