Jim Caviezel, who played Jesus Christ in Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ,” says his acting career has suffered since the movie’s 2004 release, reports the Orlando Sentinel.
Speaking to a crowd at the First Baptist Church of Orlando on Saturday, Caviezel said he’s been “rejected in [his] own industry” and cast in forgettable films. But he said Gibson predicted this would happen and warned him that the film role could be his final one.
“He said, ‘You’ll never work in this town again,'” Caviezel recalled of Gibson. “I told him, ‘We all have to embrace our crosses.'”
But Caviezel, who grew up in a Catholic household and was described by First Baptist pastor David Uth as “more passionate about God” than anyone else he has encountered, expressed no regret in portraying Christ.
“We have to give up our names, our reputations, our lives to speak the truth,” Caviezel said. “Jesus is as controversial now as he has ever been. Not much has changed in 2,000 years.”
Caviezel had less than positive things to say about director Gibson, who has come under fire in recent years for sending a threatening voicemail to former girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva and drunkenly raging about Jews.
“Mel Gibson, he’s a horrible sinner, isn’t he?” Caviezel said. “Mel Gibson doesn’t need your judgment, he needs your prayers.”