Mel Gibson is learning hypnotism.

The 54-year-old actor-and-director has reportedly spent 10 days with Australian expert Rick Collingwood, who visited his Los Angeles home and taught him the powers of suggestion and how to put people into a trance.

Rick, who is a friend of Mel's brother Chris, said: "I was heading out to Los Angeles for work so Mel invited me over. I was with him for 10 days teaching him the technique.

"Mel's a natural, he's got the look as well as piercing blue eyes. He's going to be a great hypnotist.

"Chris talked to Mel about it over the phone and Mel got interested, too."

Though the 'Braveheart' star took to learning the technique instantly, Rick is unsure if he has any plans to use it.

He said: "He is very, very interested in it. He didn't say he wanted to learn it for a specific reason. He was just curious.

"I think he's just interested in the mind and human nature."

The award-winning actor - who took an eight-year hiatus from the profession to direct movies such as 'The Passion of the Christ' - recently announced his return to the front of the camera.

He said: "I walked away from it after 'Signs' because I just felt I was stale and I needed to maybe... it wasn't ringing my bells. So I focused on directing and writing and producing and all that kind of stuff, and then it was time to come back.

"I got the acting bug back because I felt like, all of a sudden, maybe after all these years, I might have something to offer again."