He's well known as an actor, of course, but Mel Gibson is also the Oscar-winning director, with credits like Braveheart and The Passion of the Christ. He hasn't been behind the camera since 2006's Apocalypto, but he's been at work on his next directorial endeavor, a period-era action epic centered on a group of Vikings.
"I just finished writing a third draft with Randall Wallace who of course wrote the Braveheart script and it’s about the Vikings," Gibson said of the Untitled Viking Project. "I made a story up then Randall and I got together and he helped me make more of it. It’s phenomenal. I can’t wait to get my claws on it."
His last film featured nary a recognizable face in the cast, with the director instead relying on complete unknowns to lend the film verisimilitude. Asked about whether his Viking film would include familiar stars or newcomers, he replied, "You know there are a lot of faces and people going through my mind who may or may not be available but I’m not averse to finding new actors, its about who is right for the part."
Both of Gibson's last two directorial efforts included English subtitles; Apocalypto was in the Mayan language, while The Passion of the Christ included Aramaic, Hebrew, and Latin. Though the Viking film will again be set in another historical period in a far-flung locale, it won't be subtitled. "Yeah, I’m going to do it in English," the director said, before throwing a bit of a curve ball. "I want to do it in English but its not going to be the kind of English that you are used to."
Asked when he expected the Untitled Viking Project to being production, he answered enthusiastically, saying, "Man, I hope soon. There are people scratching their heads. We literally just finished it and handed it over and there are some guys looking at it now. I don’t even know if I have a greenlight yet."
On the acting side of things, a recent rumor suggested Gibson would play a supporting role in the upcoming sequel to 2010's Machete, a film with an intentionally eclectic supporting cast that included Robert De Niro, Tom Savini, Jessica Alba, Steven Seagal, and Lindsay Lohan. With Robert Rodriguez returning to direct Machete Kills and Danny Trejo set to reprise the title role, Knowles inquired about Gibson's involvement. "This is a mystery. You may be right," he said. "I was just talking to Robert (Rodriguez) upstairs before. He’s a nice guy and we were talking about this and it sounds fun."
Finally and pretty much inevitably, the subject of the Lethal Weapon franchise came up. It's been fourteen years since Lethal Weapon 4, but hope that the series might continue persists. While he's straight-up dismissed a fifth go-around in the past, this time he alluded to the possibility of he and Danny Glover handing off the baton to a younger generation. That's what Mad Max director George Miller is doing with Mad Max: Fury Road, as Gibson pointed out, saying, "Maybe, I don’t know? Who’s going to make it? I’d like to see it with someone else. They’re doing one of those Mad Max movies with a very good actor actually, a young guy named Tom Hardy. I met Tom and he’s cool, best of luck to him."
Get the Gringo will be available via Video On Demand beginning on May 1st.