Mark Wahlberg and Mel Gibson are teaming up again, this time for a faith-based biopic called Stu. The film will center around Father Stuart Long, a Montana Catholic priest who spent time earlier in life as a football player, boxer, and actor.
Mark Wahlberg started work on the movie years ago, but he put things on hold to give writer/director Rosalind Ross more time on the project, which wrapped filming earlier this year. The Uncharted star will play Father Stu. Mel Gibson will play his dad, Bill Long, NewsMax reported.
The two last worked together in 2017 on Daddy’s Home 2 with Will Ferrell and John Lithgow. Wahlberg, who is Catholic, told Parade magazine in 2013 that he was looking for the right faith-based film to produce.
“It’s the most important part of my life,” he said of his faith. “I don’t try to push it on anybody and I don’t try to hide it.”
Mark Wahlberg gained 40 pounds for the role, and he was nearly unrecognizable on the set of Stu earlier this year. He posted a shirtless photo on Instagram showing off his new doughy physique.
Father Stu served the Diocese of Helena, Montana, and his circuitous route to the pulpit gave him a unique perspective.
“(Father Stu) was an angry young man, alienating both students and priests at the Catholic college he attended, turning to boxing as a release,” says The Hollywood Reporter said of Father Stu. “A hoped-for career didn’t take off thanks to a broken jaw so he moved to L.A. for a career in the movies. … One evening he suffered a horrible motorcycle accident – he was hit by one car, then run over by another.”
Stu Long died of a rare autoimmune disease in 2014 at the age of 50.
Mel Gibson to Direct and Star in ‘Lethal Weapon 5’
Mel Gibson recently announced recently that he would star and direct Lethal Weapon 5. The film will revive the franchise which last had a sequel in 1998.
Gibson said Richard Donner, who directed all the films in the series, asked him to take over the series if anything happened to the 91-year-old director. Donner died earlier this year.
“(Donner) was developing the screenplay, and he got pretty far along with it,” Gibson said at a fan meet-up recently. “And he said to me one day, ‘Listen, kid, if I kick the bucket you will do it.’ And I said, ‘Shut up.’ But he did indeed pass away. But he did ask me to do it, and at the time I didn’t say anything. He said it to his wife, the studio, and the producer. So I will be directing the fifth one.”
Gibson didn’t say when he expects Lethal Weapon 5 to start filming.
Mel Gibson will return to play Martin Riggs in the sequel. Though, Danny Glover, who played Riggs’ partner Roger Murtaugh, hasn’t said if he’ll also reprise his role. Joe Pesci, who also appeared in the series, retired from acting in 1999. Though, he’s returned for some films like Martin Scorsese’s Irishman last year.