SAN ANTONIO (AP) - The American taxpayer may be getting into the movie business.
Federal prosecutors have forced a Mexican drug trafficker to turn over his stake in a planned prequel to Mel Gibson's 2004 blockbuster "The Passion of the Christ." It's a real-life case of drugs and extortion that could itself make a pretty good screenplay.
Some of the big names behind the Hollywood project include megachurch pastor Joel Osteen, who had no idea about the script's unsavory backstory.
Jorge Vazquez Sanchez pleaded guilty this week to extortion and money laundering and gave up a 10 percent stake in future profits of "Mary, Mother of Christ," which is scheduled to begin production this year.
The script was written by the same person behind "The Passion of the Christ."
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