Mel's New Film Riles Mexican Cons, Kin

Families protest plan to transfer inmates for filming
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 31, 2009 2:35 AM CST
Mel Gibson gestures at photographers during a private screening of his "Apocalypto" in Mexico City. Gibson is returning to Mexico for his new project.   (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
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(Newser) – Mel Gibson's latest project has infuriated the families of prisoners who may be shifted out of a Mexican prison to make way for filming. Hundreds of prisoners' relatives, fearing that transfers to other prisons will make it harder to get food to their loved ones, have been protesting outside a prison in Veracruz this week, the Independent reports.

The region's governor has boasted that much of the prison would be emptied for Gibson's "grand project." The prison's chief has attempted to reassure families by promising that transfers will be announced long in advance and every effort will be made to keep inmates in nearby prisons. Inmates in notoriously overcrowded and dangerous Mexican prisons rely on families for many basic necessities. Filming for the prison drama, How I Spent My Summer Vacation, which Gibson will direct and star in, begins in March.

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