Mel Gibson Rides Feathered Serpent to Boffo B.O.

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Photo: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
via Getty Images

Seems he will work in that town again. Mel Gibson's Apocalypto is the weekend's No. 1 film. Okay, it's true: Its haul was only a so-so $14.2 million, which means its top rank was due mostly to lack of competition — the only potential challenger, Leonardo DiCaprio vehicle Blood Diamond, flopped hard with an $8.5 million box office, which means it'll be okay to wear diamonds to the Oscars. And Gibson's take also pales next to the $83.8 million premiere of his previous directorial effort, The Passion of the Christ. (Then again, more people seem to be into Jesus than the Mayan god Chac.) But the main point remains: The auteur's DUI arrest and the subsequent Jews-and-sugartits business apparently did little to hurt the film. Apocalypto's dialogue is entirely in Mayan, it has no stars, and it's rife with Gibson's trademark torture-porn, so it's hard to see it making any more money even without the baggage. It's amusing, however, to see the industry insiders' tone shift from gleeful derision to polite surprise ("The movie obviously succeeds on its own level") at the first hint Gibson might actually still be financially viable. Oy.

Gibson Delivers Another Box Office Win [Yahoo News]