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Wonder Woman Officially Banned in Lebanon

by  in Movie News Comment

Wonder Woman has been banned by the government of Lebanon following a lobbying campaign by a group that targeted the film’s star, Israeli actress Gal Gadot.

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The country’s Ministry of Economy & Trade issued a “clarifying statement” on its website confirming the reason for the ban, and pointing to its history of actions against films featuring Gadot, including a call in 2016 for the actress to be placed on a blacklist. That was followed this morning by an announcement from Grand Cinemas, the largest theater chain in Lebanon.

Variety notes the ban, decided by a six-member committee of the Ministry of Economy & Trade, comes after the Warner Bros. film was cleared through the country’s ordinary censorship procedures.

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The move highlights the decades-long conflict between Israel and Lebanon, neighbors that officially remain at war after more than 69 years (although there’s been a cease-fire since 2006). Lebanon has long boycotted Israeli products, and bars its citizens from traveling to Israel.

The effort against Wonder Woman was waged by the Campaign to Boycott Supporters of Israel-Lebanon, which pointed to Gadot’s (mandatory) service in the Israeli military, and her public support for that nation’s controversial policies in the Gaza Strip. The group similarly sought unsuccessfully to ban Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the 2016 film that introduced Gadot as Wonder Woman.

Opening Friday nationwide, director Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman stars Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Lucy Davis, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Danny Huston, Elena Anaya, Ewen Bremner, Saïd Taghmaoui and David Thewlis.

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