Published On: Wed, Jun 8th, 2016

Rumi biopic by Hollywood gets criticism


leo cover

David Franzoni, American screenwriter, film producer and Oscar-winner is set to make a biopic on Sufi poet Jalaluddin Rumi and has got a lot of criticism on social media when he announced his desire to cast Leonardo DiCaprio as Rumi.

American magazine has stated that the Gladiator writer wants to “challenge the stereotypical portrayal of Muslim characters in Hollywood,”

The reports of The Guardian stated that David toured Istanbul to meet Rumi specialists, thus that the team could begin shooting the movie subsequent year. Franzoni told that “There are a lot of reasons we’re making a product like this right now. I think it’s the world that needs to be spoken to; Rumi is hugely popular in the United States. I think it gives him a face and a story.”

Read also: Areeba Habib a bubbly, young girl

The 69-year-old Franzoni and producer Stephen Joel Brown, stated that they would appreciate Leonardo DiCaprio to perform as Rumi and Robert Downey Jr to leading light as Shams of Tabriz. It was said in an interview by Stephen that “This is the level of casting that we’re talking about,” 

Though, the news of a ‘white-washed Rumi’ didn’t descend a lot with people who develop appreciating the poet’s work.

The star of Titanic doesn’t seem as he was born in Afghanistan, and Robert Downey Jr looks nothing similar to the non-white mystic, Shams, Twitter has overstuffed with annoyance and criticism of the casting.

Read also: Freedom of expression has died: Umair Jaswal

Imran Siddique, who is film and media critic, was tremendously choral regarding the declaration of the cast.

The filmmakers though appear rather hopeful that they will have a constructive impact on the viewers since they are revealing the narrative of someone outstanding. They consider that “there’s something intensely ‘gettable’ regarding Rumi. You get it. And not only do you get it but it involves you.”

About the Author

Sidra Muntaha

- Sidra Tul Muntaha is a journalist (MA-Mass Communication and M.Phil in Mass Communication) based in Lahore. She is working as an editor at fashion, style and entertainment in the section of the Kooza. She writes fashion and entertainment articles for The Kooza News.