What’s all the fuss about ‘Omar’: the lowdown on epic Arab TV drama
Al-Bawaba | 8.30.12
Hatem Ali, the director of the TV series “Omar,” which revolves around the life story of Islam’s second Caliph Omar ibn al-Khattab, said the controversy surrounding the series was no surprise to him.
Actually, the controversy started even before the series was aired during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a high season for TV drama and soap operas in the Middle East.
Hundreds of people joined a Facebook campaign demanding the show not be broadcast, under the title, “No to showing Farouk Omar series.” The reason for the controversy is the impersonation of Omar and several of the prophet’s closest companions and most revered figures in Islam. Some Muslims believe it is forbidden to portray Prophet Mohammed and some of his successors.
Despite the opposition and calls for boycott online, the TV series, a joint production of the Dubai-based MBC Group and Qatar Television, hit the air waves as scheduled, attracting a large number of viewers.