[Ed. – And no, it’s not because they’re annoyed by Russell Crowe.]
Darren Aronofsky‘s Noah — inspired by the Biblical story of Noah’s ark — is starting to come under fire in the Middle East for contradicting Islamic law by portraying a prophet.
On Thursday, censorship boards in Qatar, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates informed Paramount they will not allow the release of the film. Similar rulings are expected in Egypt, Jordan and Kuwait, according to Paramount insiders.
In Egypt, the leading Sunni Muslim institute Al-Azhar issued a statement on Thursday condemning the Paramount movie, saying it should be banned in that country.
“Al-Azhar renews its rejection to the screening of any production that characterizes Allah’s prophets and messengers and the companions of the Prophet [Muhammad],” the statement read. “Therefore, Al-Azhar announces the prohibition of the upcoming film about the Allah’s messenger Noah — peace be upon him.”
Al-Azhar said any such film is “contrary to faith and to the fundamentals of the Islamic Sharia [law],” adding that such movies antagonize the “feelings of the faithful.”