Mutapha Akkad (1935 – 2005) was a Syrian-American producer, director and actor. Born in Aleppo, Syria. He and his daughter Rima were murdered by terrorists in the Nov. 2005 Amman bombings in addition to more than 70 innocent civilians.
Mustapha Akkad made an effort in his life bridge the gap between the west and Islam and to remove the stigma of terrorism that Islam has been accused of …
He was in the process of producing a film about Saladin. Speaking of the film, he said,
“…Saladin exactly portrays Islam. Right now, Islam is portrayed as a terrorist religion. Because a few terrorists are Muslims, the whole religion has that image. If there ever was a religious war full of terror, it was the crusades. But you can’t blame Christianity because a few adventurers did this. That’s my message.”
In an interview, in 1976, about his film Al Risala, he said:
“I did the film because it is a personal thing for me. Besides its production values as a film, it has its story, its intrigue, its drama. Beside all this I think there was something personal, being Muslim myself who lived in the west I felt that it was my obligation my duty to tell the truth about Islam. It is a religion that has a 700 million following, yet it’s so little known about it which surprised me. I thought I should tell the story that will bridge this gap to the west.”