‘Moon Knight’ director says the show subverts offensive tropes

moon knight

Filmmaker Mohamed Diab hasn’t been holding back when it comes to addressing his thoughts on Hollywood’s meager attempts at Egyptian representation, and it just so happens that the two examples used by the Moon Knight director and executive producer hailed from DC.

Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam and Patty Jenkins’ lackluster sequel Wonder Woman 1984 were specifically singled out by Diab, who blasted the comic book adaptations for their depictions of his home country. While he did give The Rock’s DCEU debut a pass for being based on comic books where the fictional nation of Kahndaq is used as a substitute, he still blasted Gal Gadot’s second solo outing as a “disgrace”.

The cast and crew of Moon Knight have praised Diab’s commitment to authenticity and representation, so it’s no surprise that he explained to IGN how he wants to subvert the offensive stereotypes he believes have become commonplace in Hollywood.

“As an Egyptian, seeing us always portrayed in the wrong way, always portrayed with this… we call it orientalism. Look, we are very exotic, and we are… it dehumanizes us. And where women are submissive, and those kind of tropes… Showing Cairo, which always we see the pyramids in the middle of the desert, even though if you just looked a little bit to the right, the pyramids are in the middle of the city, and it’s 20 million people, and we have skyscrapers, and it’s a normal place just like this.

Killing those tropes, having the chance to show that… even though in the music, if you heard the songs, we have an art scene… beautiful Egyptian composer, Hesham Nazih, with this beautiful score that is Egyptian, but it’s international at its core, it’s universal. So that all drew me, I had this dream I put together, me and Sarah Goher, my wife and my producer, and all my projects. She’s a producer in the show now. This 200-page pitch saying everything that I just told you, and we got the job and is the show that we did today.”

As you’d imagine, Diab holds Moon Knight very close to his heart due to the influence of Egyptology and local mythology on the title hero’s origins, so he’s gone out of his way to ensure that it’s done justice on the screen.