Apr 2, 2008

“Fitna” Film of Militant Islam to Be Edited

Dutch lawmaker makes changes to “Fitna” for copyright, not content

Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders has agreed to edit “Fitna,” his short film examining the link between verses in the Koran and militant Islam, but not to cater to critics’ sensibilities. He is doing so to avoid a copyright lawsuit by a group of Danish journalists, who claim he had no permission to use a controversial political cartoon in the introduction and conclusion of his hotly debated piece.

“I don’t want my drawing to be used in something that I don’t know anything about,” the cartoon’s author, Kurt Westergaard, told the Associated Press. “Had Mr. Wilders contacted me, we could have talked together and I could have found out what he wanted with the drawing.” His group, the Danish Union of Journalists, has threatened to sue Wilders for using the illustration without the artist’s consent.

The image at the heart of the controversy within a controversy features the Prophet Mohammed with a lit bomb contained within his turban. The picture was one of several of the revered Islamic founder that caused mass protests across Europe and the Middle East upon their original publication in 2005. In his film, Wilders imposed a more realistic flame over the bomb and lengthened its wick.

This recent development is the latest in the short, but highly polarizing journey taken by Wilders, 44, to distribute “Fitna,” which the international Muslim community has largely criticized as blasphemous and offensive. Since its release Thursday, European Union leaders, the U.N. secretary-general and several Dutch officials have made it clear they do not support the movie, but have fallen short of calls by many Muslim world leaders to censor it.

Source: Hollywood Today

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