Settlement reached in 'Passion of the Christ' lawsuit against Mel Gibson

A settlement has been reached in a screenwriter's lawsuit against Mel Gibson over "The Passion of the Christ." A notice of settlement filed Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court stated that an agreement had been reached and was being put into writing. The filing asked a judge to cancel a trial scheduled for June 3. Benedict Fitzgerald sued Gibson and several film companies for $10 million in February 2008, claiming that Gibson and others vastly understated the budget for the 2004 blockbuster. The screenwriter's suit claimed Gibson told him the budget for the movie would be in the $4 million to $7 million range, but that it was significantly higher. Fitzgerald also claimed that Gibson told him he would not receive any money from the film, but considered it a gift of his faith. His attorneys also claimed Gibson spent tens of thousands of dollars on his children's education while filming in Italy and paid a chiropractor $78,000. They contended those expenses lowered payments to Fitzgerald.