Doing It for the Art: Mel Gibson chose to bankroll the film with his own money, shooting it entirely in Aramaic and Latin, and originally didn't even want to include subtitles. It's easy to forget, in light of the film's huge box office, that this was actually a huge financial gamble.
Fake Nationality: James Caviezel (Jesus Christ) is American, Maia Morgenstern (Mary) is Romanian, Hristo Shopov (Pontius Pilate) is Bulgarian, Monica Belluci (Mary Magdalene), Claudia Gerini (Claudia Procles), Luca Lionello (Judas Iscariot), Luca De Dominicis (Herod Antipas), Mattia Sbragia (High Priest Caiaphas), Rosalinda Celentano (Satan), Toni Bertorelli (Priest Annas ben Seth), Sergio Ribini (Dismas, the repentant criminal), and Francesco Cabras (Gesmas, the unrepentant criminal) are all Italian.
During the carrying-his-cross scene in The Passion of the Christ, Jim Caviezel dislocated his shoulder when he collapsed and the cross fell on him. He insisted that the take be kept in the final film, so that the pain Jesus was supposed to be experiencing would seem more real.
During the flogging scene. Caveziel was wearing a protective guard on his back while being whipped, but on the last blow the guard slipped and he was whipped for real.
To prevent injury the cross was on pads of sorts to lessen the impact as it was dropped to the ground. While recording it actually showed the cross bouncing a couple of inches off the ground. It was left in because of its simple effect.