Iran’s first big budget movie, called “Muhammad, Messenger of God,” premiered in late August. The movie, the most expensive Iranian film in history, has drawn harsh criticism from the Sunni Muslim community.
The movie offends the sect so much that Sunni clerics have called for a worldwide ban of the film — which just makes us want to watch it that much more.
According to Sunni Muslim tradition, images of the Prophet Muhammad are forbidden, especially in television and film. Iran’s Shia sect is a bit more relaxed on depictions of Muhammad, but as we saw last year when 12 Charlie Hebdo staffers were brutally murdered, only if the depictions are not of a satirical nature.
Majid Majidi, the director of the controversial film, which took seven years to complete after several groups tried to stop it, said that he made it in an attempt to “soften” the world’s perception of Islam, which according to him truly is a religion of peace.
“Unfortunately, at this time, the impression of Islam is of a radical, fanatical and violent religion, which is not what it’s about,” Majidi said. “Islam is a religion of peace, friendship and love, and I tried to show this in the film.”