Mel Gibson Said to Offer Aid to Mexico Poor

By Associated Press
1:39 PM PDT, July 14, 2006

VERACRUZ, Mexico -- Mel Gibson, about to wrap up the filming of his Mayan epic, "Apocalypto," in the jungles of Mexico's Veracruz state, is donating money to build houses for poor people in the region.

The 50-year-old director-actor will donate the money through the Rotary Club and Mexico's family welfare agency, government officials announced Thursday.

Officials said the donation will be used to construct homes for poor residents of the port city of Veracruz and the city of San Andres Tuxtla.

Gibson began filming "Apocalypto," which follows the journey of a Mayan hero on the run through the rain forests of pre-Columbian Mexico, last fall.
Like his 2004 religious blockbuster, "The Passion of the Christ," which was shot in Aramaic and Latin, "Apocalypto" is being done in an ancient tongue, Yucatec Maya.

The action adventure is set for release Dec. 8.

This is not Gibson's first demonstration of generosity in Mexico. Last October, he met with President Vicente Fox to announce that he would donate $1 million to help Mexico recover from Hurricane Stan.

Hurricane Stan and related storms left more than 1,500 people dead or missing in Central America and Mexico.

Gibson won a best-director Oscar for 1995's "Braveheart."

He has starred in the "Lethal Weapon" and "Mad Max" films, "What Women Want" and "The Man Without a Face," among other movies.
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