Lebanese Government Fuming Over Homeland’s Portrayal Of Beirut

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October 19, 2012 | 7:26am EST

Lebanese government officials are considering taking legal action against the makers of Homeland over the hit TV show’s portrayal of Beirut.
The drama stars Claire Danes as a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operative and a recent episode showed her character dodging bullets and fleeing from bad guys in Lebanon’s capital city.
The scenes, which were actually filmed in Israel, have angered officials in Lebanon, who claim Beirut has been portrayed in an unfairly negative light which could affect tourism.
Lebanon’s tourism minister, Fady Abboud, reveals he is now consulting lawyers over the show, telling the country’s Executive magazine, “This kind of film damages the image of Lebanon – it is not fair to us and it’s not true, it is not portraying reality.
“We want to take action, we want to write to the filmmakers and producers and demand an apology. And we are planning to raise a lawsuit against the director and the producer.
“This series has a lot of viewers and if you are promoting Lebanon as a non-secure zone it will affect tourism. It will mean a lot of foreigners stay away if they are convinced by what they see. Beirut is one of the most secure capitals in the world, more secure than London or New York.”
Abboud insists he is angry the scenes in question were filmed in another country and he wants to see more film crews shooting in Lebanon, adding, “We would like to welcome the crews here to film in this city – we were offended by the fact that they filmed the thing in Israel and said it was Beirut.”
Homeland was the big winner at the recent Emmy Awards in Los Angeles, picking up four honours including Outstanding Drama Series and lead acting prizes for its stars Danes and Damian Lewis.

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