Lebanon is considering taking legal action against Showtime's Homeland for its unflattering portrayal of Lebanese capital Beirut in the Emmy Award-winning series' second season.
In the first two episodes of Season 2, Homeland featured Beirut as a breeding ground for terrorists where the series' main antagonist, a high-ranking Al-Qaeda member named Abu Nazir (Navid Negahban), was holding court. Although the episodes were actually filmed in Israel, critics claim that setting the fictional action in Beirut reflects negatively on the city.
"This kind of film damages the image of Lebanon," Lebanese Tourism Minister Daby Abboud told Executive magazine. "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."
Abboud noted that they're looking into what legal action they could take against the Showtime series, which recently swept at the Emmys, taking home statues for drama series, as well as lead actor and actress for Damian Lewis and Claire Danes, respectively.
"This series has a lot of viewer,s and if you are promoting Lebanon as a non-secure zone it will affect tourism," Abboud said. "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."
In a case of unfortunate timing, a deadly explosion in Beirut caused by a car bomb killed at least eight people Friday, just two days after Abboud's comments were made public.
Do you think Homeland portrays Beirut in a poor light?