“Nefertiti Queen of the Nile” halted due to controversy over supposed “Jewish” roots

Published May 30th, 2005 - 09:20 GMT

Dr. Zahi Hawas, head of the Egyptian Antiquity Commission, has announced that he will not allow the filming of “Nefertiti Queen of the Nile” to commence in Egypt.  The film is based on the book “Moses and Akhenaton,” written by Egyptian Ahmad Othman.


Hue Hudson was chosen as director, and Othman, who resides in England, wrote the script for the film which was expected to receive international recognition.


Hawas argues that certain events depicted in the film are contradictory to Egyptian history during the Pharaonic era. Othamn counters that Hawas has jumped to conclusions before carefully reviewing his script.


Hawas claims that Othman’s book states that Akhenaton is the prophet Moses (Peace Be Upon Him) and Tahutmus III is the prophet Jacob (Peace Be Upon Him), which if true, would make all Egyptian Pharaohs of Jewish decent.  Jewish scholars have used this point to argue that their great ancestors are the roots of the Pharaonic civilization.


Hawas noted that neither he nor any Egyptian scholar opposes the production of historical films, as long as they are based on facts, and not imaginary events, such as the film “The Mummy.”


Otham claims that all of Hawas’s interpretations of the film are incorrect, and that the script does not even mention the prophet Moses (Peace Be Upon Him) or the history of the Jews. Othman claims that the section of his book in which he states that Akhenaton is the prophet Moses (Peace Be Upon Him) is historically accurate, and challenged Hawas to prove otherwise.


Egyptian producer, Ahmad Naser was shocked by Hawas’ decision, describing it as “irrational” and stating that “the film is only based on the book.” The film concerns social and humanistic issues, and does not concentrate on historical or religious facts, he added.


World-renown producer Alan Haymen has nominated Yusra and Dalia Al Buhairi for leading roles, and Hani Salama and Khaled Al Nabawi for supporting roles.


Hayman, who recently left Cairo, met with the Egyptian Minister of Information to decide on the final details of the production. The film has a budget of 100 million USD and 40 percent was to be allocated for filming in Egypt alone.


Hayman met with the supporting cast of Egyptian actors during his recent visit. Filming was scheduled to begin in Egypt early next year; in Al Aqsar for a period of five weeks, and then for another fifteen weeks at the Egyptian Media Production City.


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