Moroccan actor Said Bey, known for portraying Jesus Christ in several movies and TV shows, posted a photo of a parody painting with his face replacing Jesus' in Leonardo da Vinci's Salvator Mundi, triggering hundreds of angry comments asking him to remove the photo, saying that "prophets and sacred figures shouldn't be represented in drawings or art."
Translation: "This piece of art is by the creative artist cestjall. Bravo. There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger."
Bey was cast in several English-speaking films as Jesus as his facial features match the most common depictions of the Christian sacred figure. In his photo, which he credited to Moroccan artist Cestjall, he included a caption of an Islamic statement, apparently to emphasize his Islamic faith and to avoid being labeled as a convert.
Even though Islam doesn't explicitly prohibit the depiction of human figures, it does condemn the worship of figures, which is why most Muslims believe that prophets should not be drawn or depicted.
Yet, the Moroccan actor was widely criticized for the image and was asked by some commentators to show respect for figures of other religions. Additionally, he was accused of posting it to stir controversy and to gain publicity.
يثير الجدل من اجل النقود .قال سابقا في مشهد عاري باحد الافلام الاجنبية .كان بحاجة ماسة لنقود ولم يساعده احد طرق ابواب كثيرمن المؤسسات البنكية فرفضوا طلبه .والمضطر يركب الصعب بنظره .فمثل ذلك المشهد من اجل النقود الان ربما نفس قصة النقود .فليوضح لنا لنعرف .— Fakir Hajjj (@FakirHajjj) January 26, 2020
Translation: "He's only trying to cause controversy to make money. He said it before, he did a nude scene in a movie when he needed money and most banks declined his loan applications. He thinks it's okay to do certain things when in need. Let's ask for a clarification on this one."
Translation: "Shame on you for this photo. Show some respect for Jesus. What does Jesus Christ have to do with the Islamic statement? You have to respect all religions."
Translation: "It’s not good to play around with images of sacred people, especially that of Jesus. I am a Muslim and Moroccan like you but I still wouldn't do that not even for fun."
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