Gibson eyes Mayan myth

Los Angeles:

Mel Gibson has said his next film, to be filmed in Mexico and spoken in ancient Mayan, will shun “European faces” to keep it authentic. Set before the conquest of Central America by Europeans, Gibson said he was “creating an action adventure of mythic proportions”.

Apocalypto will focus on the life of a Mayan man, touching on “civilisations and what undermines them”. Gibson is hoping to recreate the success of The Passion of the Christ.

His Icon production company will now produce Apocalypto, with filming due to start in November in the east Mexican state of Veracruz and its vast jungle.

Residents have given their support for the film to be based near where Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes first hit land in 1519. “Above all, film is a business. Independence is a really cool thing as you can be a bit more bold, and take a few more chances with what you do,” said Gibson.

Gibson, 49, said he had been researching Mayan myths from sacred texts as well as Spanish missions texts of the 1700s. He added: “A lot of it I just made up, and when I checked it out with historians and archaeologists, it wasn’t that far wrong.”