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'The King' series inspired by work of Nobel prize winner Naguib Mahfouz pulled after controversy

When the series' teaser trailer dropped a few days ago, Twitter lit up with negative and positive thoughts. Now its producers have decided to pull it off the air altogether for its scheduled Ramadan airing.
'The King' series inspired by work of Nobel prize winner Naguib Mahfouz pulled after controversy

Here is how the Middle East Eye, a typically contentious website, weighed in on the controversy on Twitter a few days ago.

While some loved the return to a blockbuster Ramadan series from Egypt, others criticised the depiction of the Egyptian pharaoh as a bearded, more manly, muscled hunk. In ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs and statues Ahmose I is always depicted as a slim, clean shaven young man.

El Malek - The King stars Amr Youssef, is directed by Hussein Al-Manbawi and is produced by Synergy and Aroma for Tamer Morsi's United Media Services. The series is inspired by the writings of Egyptian Nobel Prize for Literature Naguib Mahfouz, who actually reinvented the character of King Ahmose I, the legendary leader known throughout history for his liberation from his homeland, turning him into a more human character in his 1944 book A Good Fight. The book's English translation is titled Thebes at War.

In light of the controversy, Egypt’s United Media Services announced the suspension of "El Malek”. UMS also announced the formation of an emergency committee consisting of a group of specialists in history, archeology and sociology to further evaluate the controversy the release of the trailer for the series caused. This of course means a delay that will make it impossible for the series to air during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

The King was scheduled to air on TV stations throughout the Middle East during the 2021 Ramadan season.

The company also deleted the trailer and it is now unavailable on all platforms. However you can still see clips of it in the MEE post above.

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