From




                                         to


   The changing roles of
       Muslims in film
                Jav...
Once upon a time

in a land called Hollywood, they
made dreams come true.
Or depending on your point of
view

brought nightmares
There were heroes
And their were villains




                  Dracula
The Villains have varied over
time: Indians
Nazis
Japanese
Sometimes Muslim villains




               The Shiekh
               Rudolph Valentino
               1921
Generally Muslims were
invisible in the early days
As were Muslim heroes
But the media was still mighty
influential
    “The media's the most powerful
   entity on earth. They have the
   power t...
Let’s fast forward
In the 80s & 90s films like
these were the norm:
Genre: Muslim
Drama,
Kidnapping, True
Story, Betrayal,
Tear Jerker,
Suspe...
Not without my daughter:

 Tagline: “In
 1984, Betty
 Mahmoody's
 husband took
 his wife and
 daughter to
 meet his family...
Not without my daughter:

 Tagline: “He
 swore they
 would be safe.”




      Film used for diversity training and unders...
Not without my daughter:


 Tagline: “They
 would be free to
 leave.”




      Film used for diversity training and under...
Not without my daughter:

 Tagline: “He
 lied.”
You won’t believe this but…

This film was
used for
diversity
training and
understanding
of Muslim
culture
This was followed by Shoot
em ups




                   1987
Billionaires, bombers, and
belly dancers




                     The Delta Force
Stereotypes of Arabs and
Muslims
 quot;Arab (read
 Muslim) culture
 has been the
 most
 misunderstood
 and supplied
 with ...
Fast forward to Present
It’s not all bad

 There are
 positive
 changes
 taking place.
Azeem helps Robin Hood

and fights
the evil
doers
eventually
saving his
life.


 .
Courageous

             An Arab
             traveler helps a
             group of
             Scandinavian
           ...
More
good
stuff
Saladin and the Muslims

                Thoughtful,
                compassionate,
                respectful,
          ...
So there is positive change
taking place in Hollywood
I get the picture, what about
In Bollywood the story is
similar but also different
 Muslims have
 had a small
 presence in
 Hindi film since
 the early ...
There have been many
Muslim Bollywood heroines




                 Waheeda Rahman




   Madhubala
                  Mumt...
Blockbuster director




Directed by (Mehboob) and lead star a Muslim (Nargis)
To one of the greatest Indian
Epic films Mughal-e-Azam:




 Directed by (K. Asif) and lead staring couple
 Muslims (Dilip...
Fast forward to today: Some of
the lead male stars are the Khans




 Shah Rukh Khan
                  Aamir Khan




    ...
But its not all good!

The heroines are gone,
  the Khans are fading,
    and there is a strong theme of
     nationalism ...
The Role of minorities has
been stereotyped




        Gabbar Singh in Sholay
Muslim character portrayal
has been either timid
Or violent
Or Promiscuous
Story of Indian partition: reduced
    to Romance and Rambo




Gadar: A blockbuster where a Sikh hero rescues Muslim dams...
Bollywood is secular but it still has
its religious motifs in every film
Worship
Marriage
And death
Every culture promotes it’s

 History
 Beliefs
 Heroes
 Values
 Norms
 Attitude
But where is the Muslim
narrative?
 Whose telling
 your stories,
 history, values?
As I said it’s not all bad

We, collectively
 are responsible:
 It starts with
 education
 Taking
 ownership
 Ends with
 a...
Spike Lee
 “I'm just trying to
 tell a good story
 and make thought-
 provoking,
 entertaining films.
 I just try and draw...
Mahatma Ghandi said
What change will you make?
Reference

 All images are used under “fair use” and
 obtained from the public domain. They are
 the property of the respe...
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From Hollywood to Bollywood: The changing role of Muslims in film

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This is Part2 of the Muslims and Media presentation. It's focus is on a little history and the changes that have taken place in depiction of Muslims in Hollywood and Bollywood.

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From Hollywood to Bollywood: The changing role of Muslims in film

  1. 1. From to The changing roles of Muslims in film Javed Mohammed Writer-Producer Writer- k2film@live.com Muslims and Media Part 2 Changing the world one story at a time Copyright 2008
  2. 2. Once upon a time in a land called Hollywood, they made dreams come true.
  3. 3. Or depending on your point of view brought nightmares
  4. 4. There were heroes
  5. 5. And their were villains Dracula
  6. 6. The Villains have varied over time: Indians
  7. 7. Nazis
  8. 8. Japanese
  9. 9. Sometimes Muslim villains The Shiekh Rudolph Valentino 1921
  10. 10. Generally Muslims were invisible in the early days
  11. 11. As were Muslim heroes
  12. 12. But the media was still mighty influential “The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses.”
  13. 13. Let’s fast forward
  14. 14. In the 80s & 90s films like these were the norm: Genre: Muslim Drama, Kidnapping, True Story, Betrayal, Tear Jerker, Suspense, Escape, Doctor, Spy, Hostage, Political Film used for diversity training and understanding
  15. 15. Not without my daughter: Tagline: “In 1984, Betty Mahmoody's husband took his wife and daughter to meet his family in Iran.” Film used for diversity training and understanding
  16. 16. Not without my daughter: Tagline: “He swore they would be safe.” Film used for diversity training and understanding
  17. 17. Not without my daughter: Tagline: “They would be free to leave.” Film used for diversity training and understanding
  18. 18. Not without my daughter: Tagline: “He lied.”
  19. 19. You won’t believe this but… This film was used for diversity training and understanding of Muslim culture
  20. 20. This was followed by Shoot em ups 1987
  21. 21. Billionaires, bombers, and belly dancers The Delta Force
  22. 22. Stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims quot;Arab (read Muslim) culture has been the most misunderstood and supplied with the worst stereotypesquot;: Scott J. Simon
  23. 23. Fast forward to Present
  24. 24. It’s not all bad There are positive changes taking place.
  25. 25. Azeem helps Robin Hood and fights the evil doers eventually saving his life. .
  26. 26. Courageous An Arab traveler helps a group of Scandinavian adventurers in a battle with a tribe of cannibalistic raiders.
  27. 27. More good stuff
  28. 28. Saladin and the Muslims Thoughtful, compassionate, respectful, brave and human leader.
  29. 29. So there is positive change taking place in Hollywood
  30. 30. I get the picture, what about
  31. 31. In Bollywood the story is similar but also different Muslims have had a small presence in Hindi film since the early days Dilip Kumar (real name Yusuf Khan) one of the top 3 actors of his time 1950s-60s
  32. 32. There have been many Muslim Bollywood heroines Waheeda Rahman Madhubala Mumtaz
  33. 33. Blockbuster director Directed by (Mehboob) and lead star a Muslim (Nargis)
  34. 34. To one of the greatest Indian Epic films Mughal-e-Azam: Directed by (K. Asif) and lead staring couple Muslims (Dilip Kumar and Madhubala)
  35. 35. Fast forward to today: Some of the lead male stars are the Khans Shah Rukh Khan Aamir Khan Salman Khan
  36. 36. But its not all good! The heroines are gone, the Khans are fading, and there is a strong theme of nationalism in films.
  37. 37. The Role of minorities has been stereotyped Gabbar Singh in Sholay
  38. 38. Muslim character portrayal has been either timid
  39. 39. Or violent
  40. 40. Or Promiscuous
  41. 41. Story of Indian partition: reduced to Romance and Rambo Gadar: A blockbuster where a Sikh hero rescues Muslim damsel during riots, fall in love And then goes to rescue her from evil Pakistani Muslims.
  42. 42. Bollywood is secular but it still has its religious motifs in every film
  43. 43. Worship
  44. 44. Marriage
  45. 45. And death
  46. 46. Every culture promotes it’s History Beliefs Heroes Values Norms Attitude
  47. 47. But where is the Muslim narrative? Whose telling your stories, history, values?
  48. 48. As I said it’s not all bad We, collectively are responsible: It starts with education Taking ownership Ends with action.
  49. 49. Spike Lee “I'm just trying to tell a good story and make thought- provoking, entertaining films. I just try and draw upon the great culture we have as a people, from music, novels, the streets.”
  50. 50. Mahatma Ghandi said
  51. 51. What change will you make?
  52. 52. Reference All images are used under “fair use” and obtained from the public domain. They are the property of the respective copyright holders. Please Note: I started to keep track of sources but it became too cumbersome.

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