‘Sacrilegious’ film 'Noah' gets go-ahead from censors

Cast member Russell Crowe attends the U.S. premiere of "Noah" in New York March 26, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

BEIRUT: Lebanese movie-goers can put “Noah” back on their list of films to watch this year. The censorship bureau at Lebanon’s General Security has given Darren Aronofsky’s biblical epic the green light for commercial screening.

General Security spokesmen said permits for exhibiting the film, which has been banned in a number of countries since its world premiere earlier this month, were issued Wednesday morning.

Qatar, Bahrain, the UAE and Indonesia have banned Aronofsky’s feature because their religious authorities feel its depictions of the prophet Noah violate Islamic law. Distributors are still awaiting rulings from censors in Egypt, Jordan and Kuwait.

Controversy was first sparked by conservative Christians in the U.S. who wanted Paramount Pictures to add a disclaimer saying that “artistic license has been taken” in telling the story. Among Muslims, the problem relates to depictions of Noah, one of the 25 prophets in Islamic tradition.

Featuring an all-star cast that includes Russel Crowe, Anthony Hopkins and Jennifer Connelly, the film centers on the biblical story of Noah’s Ark.

Bassam Eid, project manager and theater coordinator for Circuit Empire cinemas, confirmed that “not a single minute, not a single second” of Aronofsky’s film would be censored.





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