By Katherine Boyce
In August of 2011, several actors and actresses were filmed as parts of a low-budget independent feature film called ‘Desert Warrior’.
However, they did not know that the entire purpose of the film was to be dubbed over with an anti-Islamic theme that
portrayed Muhammad as a child-molesting villain.
The plot of Desert Warrior that the actors were presented with involved a comet falling into the desert, and subsequently being sought-after by different Egyptian tribes. Georgian actress Anna Gurji, who played the role of Hilary, a young girl sold to a tribal leader called George, claims that she was only given the script for her own scenes, and not for the entire film.
Though it seemed strange to not have the full script, she had had a similar experience before, for a film in which only her own scenes were in English. Thinking that this was the same for Desert Warrior, she did not analyze this further. The character of George was changed to Muhammad when the film was released under the title Innocence of Muslims.
“There was no mention ever by anyone named Muhammad and no mention of religion during the entire time I was on the set,” Gurij
says. “I am a hundred percent certain nobody in the cast and nobody in the US artistic side of the crew knew what was really planned for this ‘Desert Warrior’.”
Following the filming of her scenes, Gurij was told about a premier to which she would be able to invite friends and family, yet Gurij received no further notice about a premier, nor did she ever see a finished product other than the excerpts that were posted online.
Actress Cindy Lee Garcia also claims to have been deceived.
“There wasn’t anything about Muhammad or Muslims or anything,” Garcia says. According to Garcia, all references to Muhammad or Islam were added in during post-production. Writer and Director Sam Bacile swindled several actors into participating in a film that not only went against their values but also led to the deaths of embassy staff in Libya and many protest-related injuries all over the Middle East.
Despite only being shown once, to an audience of ten people, the film called Innocence of Muslims has sparked too many protests and angered far too many Middle Easterners. The actors, who were involved without their knowledge, do not want their names associated with the appalling toll the movie has taken internationally.