Speed Reads

blockbuster blocked

Lebanon bans Wonder Woman because lead actress Gal Gadot is Israeli

Usually, a movie has to be somehow perceived as controversial to be banned from theaters, whether it features a same-sex romance or toes the line of religious acceptance. But Lebanon is banning Wonder Woman, the superhero flick centered around the titular DC Comics heroine, from its theaters this summer for a much different reason: The lead actress is Israeli.

Though major blows haven't been exchanged between Lebanon and Israel in over a decade, the two countries are still technically at war, Foreign Policy explains. An old law in Lebanon bans the import of any Israeli goods, as well as forbids any Lebanese citizens from traveling to Israel; Wonder Woman stars Israeli actress Gal Gadot as the title character. As a citizen of Israel, Gadot served in the Israeli army, per the country's mandatory service law.

Lebanon's Interior Ministry announced the ban just hours before Wonder Woman was set to premiere at select theaters across the country. Gadot also appeared in last year's Batman v Superman, playing the same character, but while that film was permitted to be screened in Lebanon when it dropped in 2016, protests and boycotts this time around apparently inspired the Lebanese government to change its tune.