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article imageMuhammad's Great Adventure, The Movie

By Gar Swaffar     Oct 29, 2008 in World
Despite being a largish religion, movies about the founder of Islam are in short supply. It is apparently difficult to make a movie about a character who can't be shown at all.
Muhammad, worship him or hate him, he changed the world. Some say for the better others will disagree vehemently. In 1977 Anthony Quinn starred in a movie “The Message” directed by Moustapha Akkad.
That film stirred up a great deal of controversy and protest from various fanatical elements of Islam. The protests included threats of blowing up the building housing the Washington D.C. chapter of B’nai B’rith if the screening of the movie wasn't cancelled.
On Monday Oct. 27th, the announcement of a remake of the movie was made. Unfortunately Moustapha Akkad, who was also the Executive Director of the ‘Halloween’ series movies, is no longer available to work on the new film, having succumbed to his injuries in a Al Queda homicide bomb attack at a luxury hotel in Amman Jordan in 2005.
While any portrayal of Muhammad is strictly forbidden by Islamic belief, the original film used scenes of Muhammad speaking while off camera to his loyal henchmen in the conquest of Mecca. It can be presumed no actor will actually be shown as Muhammad in the newest version either, since that would be certain to raise the same sort of, if not worse, rioting which followed the use of cartoons of Muhammad in Danish and other newspapers. Those cartoons showed Muhammad unflatteringly as being a mad bomber intent only on the killing of people who disagree with Islam.
"In the 21st century there is a real need for a film that emotionally engages audiences on the journey that led to the birth of Islam," the statement quoted the film's scriptwriter Ramsey Thomas as saying.
Seemingly at this point in history even some of the fanatical elements of Islam see a need to undergo a PR campaign for the perception of Islam as a quasi religion based purely on the concept of "Believe as I do or Die"
While the details of production and funding have not been released, it can only be presumed the funding of a movie which will show Muhammad in a positive role will find a number of Arab backers to choose from.
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