The Message ( Arabic title : الرسالة [arrissala] 1 , the English title : The Message ) is a Moustapha Akkad film made in 1976 and released the following year.
Describing the life of the prophet of Islam Mohammed , this film has the particularity of being shot simultaneously in English and Arabic, with different main actors depending on the version. In accordance with the aniconism of the Islamic tradition , the prophet is never represented . Its presence is “evoked” , or “suggested” to the viewer, by the process of the subjective camera 2 , 3 . The same treatment is applied to Ali ibn Abi Talib who “appears” in the film.
In 610 , the West enters the Middle Ages and many civilizations disappear [ref. necessary] . The prophet Muhammad is 40 years old that year and he preaches the Qur’an . The action takes place from the year when he preaches the Qur’an in the year of his death in 632.
- Original title: الرسالة , Al Rissalah
- English title: The Message
- French title: Le Message
- Director: Moustapha Akkad , assisted by Andrew Marton
- Scenario: HAL Craig, Jawdat El-Sahhar, Rahman El-Sharkawi Mohammad Ali Maher, Tewfik El Hakim (en)
- Production: Moustapha Akkad , Harold Buck, Mohammad Sanousi
- Production Company: Filmco International Productions
- Distribution: Filmco International Productions Inc.
- Artistic direction: Norman Dorme, Abdel Moneim Shoukry
- Photography: Said Baker, Jack Hildyard , Ibrahim Salem
- Music: Maurice Jarre
- Editing: John Bloom
- Sets: Maurice Fowler, Tambi Larsen
- Costumes: Phyllis Dalton
- Language: Arabic / English (exists in two versions)
- Country: United Kingdom, Lebanon, Libya, Kuwait, Morocco
- Genre: Historical, Religious
- Format: Colors – 35 mm – 2,35: 1 – Mono
- Budget: 10,000,000 $ (estimate)
- Box Office: 15 million $
- Duration: 171 minutes / 198 minutes (Arabic version)
- Release dates:
- United States (New York only): March 9, 1977
- France : July 8, 1977
- Turkey : October 1977
- United States : July 2, 2012 (Blu-ray Premiere)
- Anthony Quinn (FW: Henry Djanik ) : Hamza
- Irene Papas : Hind
- Michael Ansara (VF: Denis Savignat ) : Abu Sufyan ibn Harb
- André Morell (VF: Georges Riquier ) : Abu Talib
- Wolfe Morris : Abu-Lahab
- Rosalie Crutchley : Soumaya
- Damien Thomas (VF: Claude Giraud ) : Zaid
- Johnny Sekka : Bilal
- Michael Forest (VF: Michel Le Royer ) : Khalid
- Garrick Hagon (VF: Pierre Arditi ) : Ammar
- Martin Benson (VF: Jacques Mauclair ) : Abu Jahl
- Robert Brown (VF: André Valmy ) : Otba
- Bruno Barnabe (VF: Albert Medina ) : Umaya
- Jason Neville (VF: Bernard Murat ) : Jaafar
- John Bennett (VF: Rene Arrieu ) : Salool
- Donald Burton (VF: Pierre Hatet ) : Amr
- Earl Cameron (VF: George Aminel ) : Annajashi
- George Camiller (VF: Sady Rebbot ) : Waleed
- Nicolas Amer: Suheil
- Ronald Chenery: Mosaab
- Michael Godfrey (VF: François Chaumette ) : Barra
- John Humphry: Ubaida
- Ewen Solon (VF: Louis Arbessier ) : Yasser
- Ronald Leigh-Hunt: Heraclius
- Leonard Trolley: Silk Merchant
- Gerard Hely: Sinan
- Habib Ageli: Hudayfa
- Peter Madden : the toothless man
- Hassan Joundi (VF: René Arrieu ) : Kisra
- Elaine Ives-Cameron: Arwa
- Mohammad Al-Gaddary: Usurer
- Ahmed Abdelhalim: Uriqat
- Mohamed Basri : Merchant
- Hassan Essakali
- Salem Gedara: Wahshi
- Richard Johnson (VF: Roland Ménard ) : The Narrator
- Abdullah Gaith (en) : Hamza ibn Abdul-Muttalib
- Muna Wassef : Hind bint ‘Utba
- Hamdi Gaith: Abu Sufyan ibn Harb
- Ali Ahmed Salem: Bilal ibn Rabah
- Mahmud Sa’eed: Khalid ibn al-Walid
- Ahmed Marey : Zayd ibn Harithah
- Mohammed Al-Arabi: Ammar
- Hassan Jundi: Abu Jahl
- Sanaa Gamil (en) : Sumayyah bint Khayyat
- Abdu al-Wareth: Yasir ibn Amir
- Monir Ma’acery: Djafar ibn Abi Talib
- Abd Ar Raheem El Zarkany: Abu Talib
- Abd Al Badee’a Al Araby: Utbah ibn Rabi’ah (en)
- Abd Al Atheem Ab al Hak Ashama ibn Abjar
- Ahmed Abatha: Abu Lahab
- Martin Benson : Khosro I
- Ronald Leigh-Hunt (in) : Heraclius
- Salem Jadara: Wahshi ibn Harb (en)
- Mohammed Sabeeh: Sorakat, the guide
- Tayeb Saddiki : Walid
- Mahmoud Yassine : The Narrator 4
Akkad meets the reluctance of Hollywood studios to produce a film about the origins of Islam and had to shoot his film with Kuwaiti , Moroccan and Libyan funding . The film was shot in Morocco and largely in Libya . Akkad consulted with Muslim scholars to respect Muslim beliefs, particularly regarding the portrayal of the Prophet Muhammad, to the point of having his film approved by al-Azhar University . He wanted to make a film that is a “bridge” between Muslim civilization and the West.
” I made this film because it represents a personal issue. In addition, his production is interesting, there is a story, a plot, a dramatic force. As a Muslim living in the West, I consider it my duty to tell the truth about Islam. It is a religion that has 700 million followers, yet we know so little about it that it is surprising. I thought telling this story could create a bridge to the West 5 . “
viewThis section does not provide enough sources (February 2016) .
Upon the release of the Message to the United States, the, an armed group of twelve African-American activists proclaiming themselves ” Hanafi Muslims ” and claiming in particular the destruction of the film they consider “sacrilegious” , takes 149 people hostage in three buildings in Washington . The hostage-taking lasts 39 hours and makes one (or two) death (s) and 12 wounded 2 , 6 .
The film was screened in prime time on Antenne 2 , during an issue of the show Les Dossiers de l’écran dedicated to Islam, in 1979 and on the channel Arte in prime time of the evening of July 24, 2017 7 .
Around the film
- The film has been dubbed in 12 languages 1 .
- It took four and a half months to build a replica of the city of Mecca .
- The cast brought together more than 28 nationalities and different cultures.
- Mohamed Ali was interested in the role of Bilal ibn Rabah but the filmmaker refused for fear that his notoriety would overshadow the film.
- Almost all of Michael Forest’s replicas were dubbed by an Englishman to hide his American accent, which is ironic given that he was a doubler himself.
- This is the latest appearance of British actor Peter Madden .
- In 2015 , according to The Guardian relayed by Libération , its projection was canceled in Glasgow ( Scotland ) following a petition from “94 people claiming to be based in Nigeria , Bahrain and Saudi Arabia ” 1 . The problem that arose was that Anthony Quinn 1 – playing the role of Hamza , uncle of the prophet Muhammad – are dancing and “the fact that the companions of the Prophet […] [are] not embodied by the Muslim one . “
- ↑ a , b , c , d and e Mohamed Zerni, ” The film” The Message “censored in Scotland ” [ archive ] , on Webdo.tn , (accessedFebruary 6, 2016 ) .
- ↑ a and b Julie Pêcheur , ” Mohammed, the biopic of all dangers ” [ archive ] [html] , on lemonde.fr , M, the magazine of the World ,(accessed August 22, 2016 ) .
- ↑ Said Mahrane , ” Mohammed, the cursed movie ” [ archive ] [php] , on the point.fr , Le Point , (accessed January 22, 2016 ) .
- ↑ Ignacio Ramonet , ” ” The Message “: an” epic “Impossible “, Le Monde diplomatique , ( read online [ archive ] ).
- ↑ GIL [ archive ] , ” The Message, by Moustapha Akkad ” [ archive ] , on Leconflit.com , (accessed February 6, 2016 ) .
- ↑ (in) Theresa Vargas , ” ” Some Things You Never Forget “ ” [ archive ][html] on washingtonpost.com , The Washington Post ,(accessed August 22, 2016 ) .
- ↑ Three good reasons to see “The Message” [ archive ] . Arte . (accessed July 24, 2017)