Ridley Scott’s Moses epic, Exodus: Gods and Kings is doing some string business at the box office, however there a certain places in the world that the film will never be seen. Egypt, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates have all banned the film, stating that it is not historically correct.
A report from the Egyptian site Mobtada said censors issued the ban due to movie’s “historical inaccuracies.”
Those included the film’s depiction of Jews as having built the Pyramids and the Biblical story of a miracle by Moses causing the Red Sea to part so that the Jewish people could escape from the pursuing Egyptian army.
Egyptian cultural minister Gaber Asfour said the depiction of Jewish slaves as being the builders of the Great Sphinx and Pyramids is inaccurate because the monuments are accepted to have been built around 2540 B.C. — 500 years before Abraham, the father of Judaism.
“This totally contradicts proven historical facts,” Asfour said.
“It is a Zionist film,” he said. “It gives a Zionist view of history and contains historical inaccuracies, and that’s why we have decided to ban it.”
Deadline then released news of further bans in the UAE:
Exodus, Ridley Scott’s epic retelling of the story of Moses, will not be released in the United Arab Emirates after censors in the country objected to what they described as historical and religious inaccuracies. The move follows on from similar decisions in Egypt and Morocco.
“We found that there are many mistakes not only about Islam but other religions too. So, we will not release it in the UAE,” Juma Obeid Al Leem, the director of Media Content Tracking at the National Media Council, was quoted as saying in local newspaper Gulf News.
It is generally prohibited to depict prophets and religious figures in Islamic, societies. Those laws saw Darren Aronofsky’s Noah banned across large swathes of the Arab world in March this year. At the time, the Egypt-based Al-Azhar, Sunni Islam’s highest authority, criticized Aronofsky’s film.
Ironically, Exodus is set in ancient Egypt, and parts of the film were shot in Morocco.
Exodus: Gods and Kings is directed by Ridley Scott, and is written by Steven Zaillian and Bill Collage. Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton lead the cast, which also includes Sigourney Weaver, Ben Kingsley, John Turturro, and Aaron Paul.
Exodus: Gods and Kings will be released in UK cinemas on Boxing Day. Read our review here
From acclaimed director Ridley Scott (Gladiator, Prometheus) comes the epic adventure “Exodus: Gods and Kings,” the story of one man’s daring courage to take on the might of an empire. Using state-of-the-art visual effects and 3D immersion, Scott brings new life to the story of the defiant leader Moses (Christian Bale) as he rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses (Joel Edgerton), setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.