Controversial Prophet Muhammad Epic ‘The Message’ To Get Saudi Arabia Cinema Release

Action Remake Of Disney Classic

The Oscar-nominated film by Syrian-American director and producer Moustapha Akkad was last week cleared by the censorship board and will be screened in a restored 4K version. In the 1970’s, the film provoked controversy and was banned from release in a number of Arab countries. The planned distribution in the U.S. sparked a terror incident resulting in the deaths of a journalist and a policeman. The film’s restoration has been a long-time passion project for Akkad’s son, Malek Akkad, producer of the upcoming Halloween sequel. His father had began work on the film in 1974, shooting two versions simultaneously — one in Arabic and one in English. The Arabic version featured some of the biggest stars of Arab cinema, including Abdullah Gaith in the lead role of Hamza. In the English version, the role of Hamza was played by Anthony Quinn.