Ridley Scott’s epic retelling of Moses’ story “Exodus: Gods and Kings” will not be released in the United Arab Emirates, Egypt or Morocco due to what’s being described as “historical and religious inaccuracies” by the state censorship boards in those countries.
It is generally prohibited to depict prophets and religious figures in Islamic societies, which is why films such as Darren Aronofsky’s “Noah” were banned across large swathes of the Arab world in March this year.
Juma Obeid Al Leem, the director of Media Content Tracking at the UAE’s National Media Council said: “We found that there are many mistakes not only about Islam but other religions too. So, we will not release it in the UAE.”
Egyptian state censorship board head Abdul Sattar Fathi says: “One of the key historical mistakes made by this film is that it claims the Jews were the ones who built the Pyramids. The film treats Moses as an army general, not as a prophet. Furthermore, it shows ancient Egyptians as a mob group persecuting peaceful Jews. Our board has refused this out of respect for Egyptians’ feelings.”
It’s an ironic twist considering “Exodus” is set in ancient Egypt, and a good portion of the film was shot in Morocco.