New Movie Starring Jesse Eisenberg Replaces Palestinian Arabic With Gibberish

October 23, 2014 | Prachi Gupta

Jesse Eisenberg is starring in a new movie that uses Brooklyn’s Red Hook as a backdrop for the war-torn Gaza Strip, but has recreated Palestinian propaganda posters without using proper Arabic.

A scene set up on Thursday for Louder Than Bombs called for female actors wearing headscarves — presumably Palestinian Muslims — who were instructed to scream and run past a wall plastered in graffiti, the Palestinian flag, and Palestinian propaganda. But the writing on the latter set of posters doesn’t make sense.

Unlike English script, in Arabic, letters are connected to form a word. In the posters on the set of Louder Than Bombs, these connections are missing, making the Arabic look like a WingDings font rather than words. ANIMAL’s photographer Aymann Ismail was on the scene and noted, “It’s Arabic, but it looks like they didn’t do any homework.”


The translated text seems like it should read, from right to left, “Together we are strong” and “In the memory of a martyr and a son for his efforts in fighting injustice/tyranny.”

ANIMAL reached out to the film’s primary production company, the French-based Memento Films, via e-mail, as well as NYC-based Animal Kingdom, but did not hear back by the time of publication.

Louder Than Bombs is the English-language debut from Norwegian director Joachim Trier about a family that struggles to reconcile conflicting memories of the family matriarch, a late war photographer. Jesse Eisenberg and Devin McKenzie Druid play the sons, Gabriel Byrne stars as their father, and Isabelle Huppert stars the photographer. The movie began filming in New York September 5th.

(Photo: Aymann Ismail/ANIMALNewYork)