UK's Biggest Cinema Chain Cancels All Screening Of Movie Based On Life Of Muhammad's Daughter After Protests By Muslims Calling It 'Blasphemous'

by Swarajya Staff - Jun 8, 2022 09:03 PM +05:30 IST
UK's Biggest Cinema Chain Cancels All Screening Of Movie Based On Life Of Muhammad's Daughter After Protests By Muslims Calling It 'Blasphemous'
Muslims protesting against the movie Lady of Heaven outside Cineworld i
Snapshot
  • Cineworld, the world's second-largest cinema chain, cancelled all screenings of the film, titled 'Lady of Heaven', after angry protests by the members of the British Muslim community outside theatres in Birmingham, Bolton, Bradford and Sheffield.

UK cinema chain Cineworld has withdrawn all scheduled screenings of a film about the daughter of the Mohammed, considered by Muslims as their last prophet, after it sparked protests from Muslim groups outside theatres, calling the movie "blasphemous".

Cineworld, the world's second-largest cinema chain, cancelled all screenings of the film, titled 'The Lady of Heaven', after angry protests by the members of the British Muslim community outside theatres in Birmingham, Bolton, Bradford and Sheffield.

In a statement yesterday by the cinema chain, it announced that "we have made the decision to cancel upcoming screenings of the film nationwide to ensure the safety of our staff and customers".

The Lady of Heaven, released last Friday in the UK, portray events in the life of the daughter of the Mohammed and is said to have scenes featuring the "face" of the Mohammed on screen. The plot of the movie is about Laith, an Iraqi child who, after losing his mother, finds himself a new home with an elderly woman who narrates the story of Fatimah, the daughter of Mohammed.

Directed by Eli King and produced by the UK-based entertainment company Enlightenment Kingdom, the movie was made on a budget of $15 million. The movie's script was written by a noted Kuwaiti Shia cleric, Yasser Al-Habib.

Protests By Muslim Community

The Bolton Council of Mosques had urged the cancellation of the screening, saying the film was "underpinned with a sectarian ideology and is blasphemous in nature to the Muslim community".

A scheduled screening of the movie in Bolton cine hall was cancelled after 100 protesters turned up at the local Cineworld branch.

Claire Fox, a member of the House of Lords, criticised that the decision to cancel the screening showed the "creep of extra-parliamentary blasphemy law" was now censoring film.

Malik Shlibak, the executive producer of the film, told the Guardian cinemas should "stand up and defend their right to show films that people want to see".

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