Released in theaters on June 3, The Lady of Heaven tells the story of Muhammad’s daughter by featuring several relatives of the prophet. Its detractors consider it “blasphemous” and “offensive”.
The British movie The Lady of Heaven released Friday June 3 attracts the wrath of part of the Muslim community in the United Kingdom. Demonstrations and rallies have already taken place in several cities across the country.
In Blackburn, a city of more than 100,000 inhabitants north of Manchester, several dozen people gathered on June 3 to demonstrate in front of a cinema which was showing the film, reports the local media. Lancashire Telegraph . In addition to the withdrawal of the feature film from the online catalog, the protesters would have obtained the suspension of its distribution. Elsewhere in England, other protests also marked the release of the feature film, as in Sheffield, for example, where the manager would have announced in turn the withdrawal of the film.
In another video footage posted on social media, another protest can be seen outside the Cineworld cinema chain. At the cry of “God is great“, several dozen Muslim demonstrators express their dissatisfaction with the broadcast of this film which they consider “offensive” and “insulting“.
The film combines two parallel plots. The first tells that of Laith, an Iraqi child who lost his mother killed by the Islamic State. In the home that takes him in, an elderly woman tells him the story of Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad. The feature then returns to the beginnings of Islam by featuring several relatives of the prophet, including Ali, the founder of the Shiite branch, one of the central characters of the film.
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Already banned in Iran, Pakistan and Iraq, the film has caused a stir elsewhere than in the United Kingdom. What do we blame him for? “This is the first film to put the prophet’s face on screen.», notes the Guardian in a review. In Islam, the visual representation of the prophet is strictly forbidden. The young director supported by Yasser Al Habib, a Muslim intellectual from Kuwait, has chosen to portray Muhammad and several of his relatives even if no actor plays their role since the faces have been generated virtually by computer.
The protests mainly accuse the films of “historical inaccuracies» around the representations of certain relatives of the Prophet Muhammad, judging them «blasphemous” and “anti-sunnis“. He is indeed accused of sowing discord between Shia and Sunni Muslims. A petition has been launched calling for the film to be permanently withdrawn from UK cinemas. This has so far received the signature of nearly 116,000 Internet users.
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