Iran: Film about Christ based on the Koran
Tehran, 27 May (AKI) - Iranian filmmaker, Nader Talebzadeh, says that he has made the first ever film about Jesus Christ based on the Koran, the Muslim holy book. In the film, entitled "Jesus, the Spirit of God", Christ does not end up on the cross and Judas is crucified instead. The film, which the director describes as "Christ as told by the Koran", took 10 years and five million dollars to make.
"It is the first time that the life of Jesus has been told from an Islamic point of view," said Talebzadeh in an interview with Adnkronos International (AKI). "In the Koran, there are many elements of Jesus' life that are unique and obviously do not coincide with the version that has been told by Christian historiography. It is right that in the third millenium this version is also made known," he told AKI.
Talebzadeh put Judas on the cross instead of Christ "because according to the Koran, Jesus was never crucified and was not even killed."
"Various versions of our sacred book are dedicated to this fact and none of them talk about the crucifixion of Jesus."
As for who was crucified in Jesus' place, there are many version and I decided to use the version from Barnabas which talks about Judas on the cross in the place of the prophet," said the director referring to the Gospel of Barnabas. The director is convinced that his film tells "a truth that Christians refuse to accept." "With this obviously I absolutely don't want to call into question the fact that Jesus was a loved prophet," he said. "My aim was to offer the public our vision of this grand prophet which can be summarised in this way: Jesus is not the son of God, Jesus was not crucified, and Jesus ushered in the arrival of the Prophet Mohammed," said Talebzadeh. "All of these truths are based on two sources, the Koran and the Gospel of Barnabas."In Talebzadeh's film, the character of Jesus is played by Ahmad Soleymaninia. "I have identified with the character of Jesus since I was eight years old, when for the first time I saw Leonardo da Vinci's Last Supper," said the actor in an interview with AKI. "Since then I grew my hair long and kept a beard like him."This is Ahmad's first time on the big screen. Up until recently, he worked in one of the Iranian nuclear plants. However he prefers not to talk about his experiences there. "I prefer to enrich my spirit and not uranium," he said.