An Osama bin Laden comedy? Too soon?

Osama-Bin-LadenImage Credit: AP Images; Comedy Central; FoxA comedy about Osama bin Laden? Why, that’s about as tasteless as a musical about Hitler! (Cue soundtrack for The Producers.) A lot of people in India — and probably a few in America — are undoubtedly bracing for controversy over next week’s India-wide opening of Tere Bin Laden, a Bollywood satire about a reporter who becomes famous after taping a fake interview with a Bin Laden impersonator. After all, Bin Laden is a mass murderer, the very face of evil. There’s nothing funny about what he stands for or the crimes he’s committed. And yet…I’m totally rooting for this movie. Anything that turns Al-Qaeda into a laughingstock is okay in my book.

Indeed, here in America, there’s a long, happy tradition of transforming our enemies into clowns. The Three Stooges did it with Hitler in 1940’s You Nazty Spy! (And Charlie Chaplin followed in their footsteps later that year, famously impersonating Hitler in The Great Dictator.) Leslie Nielsen did it with the Ayatollah in 1988’s The Naked Gun. And now it’s bin Laden’s turn to be punished in the courtroom of popular culture. In fact, he’s already made cameos on South Park and The Family Guy. Why not in a Bollywood comedy?

But maybe you disagree, Popwatchers. Maybe you think it’s still too soon. If so, here’s your chance to stir up unnecessary controversy…

Comments (25 total) Add your comment
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  • Tinuviel Undomiel

    “It’s Springtime with Hitler in Germany”

  • Momo

    I’m all for it as long as it’s actually funny and disparages his character. Heck, I’m reminded of the Southpark movie with its main baddie being a satan-f*ker Sadam Hussein. Best thing ever.

  • Robert Taylor

    Much too soon.

    Your examples are also flawed. While you cite both the Stooges and the Chaplin film, you fail to note that both made their respective films before America knew all the facts. Once all the death marches and concentration camp facts came to light in their horrifying glory, both parties went on the record to say that, had they known these facts when making the film, they would have not made them.

    So yes, much too soon.

    • Naja haje

      Good point.

    • yep

      VERY very good point

    • MajorWhoaButWhy

      Good point. You changed my mind.

    • ani

      Too soon from whose point of view? The world does not revolve around the US. India has been a significant target of terrorism and has been waging their own fight against religious extremists since before the US was even a factor. I think they can make whatever film they want and target whatever psycho they want and it will not be “too soon” for them. i would just hope that 9/11 will not play a role in any of the material.

  • um…

    “much too soon?” idk…its been 9 years, going on 10 since the attack on the US…if people haven’t started coping then they need to seek help…on with the show, I say!

    • Robert Taylor

      And the repercussions of that day ten years ago are still felt every single day as more and more of our boys die. Still seems pretty fresh to me.

      • dylan atkins

        but honestly if you cannot laugh at something that’s funny, no matter what it is, then you are a simple, one-track minded prude

  • yogi

    If you can’t laugh at him, the terrorists have won.

  • Hamis

    There’s the 1942 classic Jack Benny/Carole Lombard movie directed by Ernst Lubitsch “To Be or Not to Be”. One of my favorite quotes is “Yes, yes… we do the concentrating and the Poles do the camping”.

    • Hamish

      I should add that it’s showing on TCM next Tuesday. Catch it!

    • Chris

      In hindsight, not funny.

  • Ixarix

    I agree, it is much to soon.


    World Cup is about sportsmanship. It’s not only about win/lose, guys.I actually enjoyed watching it.. & i gotta say im not a big fan of soccer! hehehe.. but the Legos sure make it more interesting and fun.
    . heheheh :))My boyfriend agree with me. He is 10 years older than me,haha. We met online @ sugarbabymeet ● {℃00M}~a wonderful and free place for younger women and older men, or older women and younger men, to interact with each other. Maybe you wanna check out or tell your friends.

  • amylovesnewwave

    It’s “rooting.” Please fix.

  • jones j.

    Well atleast Hitler has now become a beloved character in modern pop culture.. one that only exist to make us laugh

  • LOL

    George W. Bush and Dick Cheney killed more Americans than Osama bin Laden.

  • Silk Spectre

    The way I see it, if we make a satire out of evil, we break evil down. people like bin laden want us to be afraid of them. when we make jokes, it shows them we are not afraid.

    • Samurai Goro

      Wait, so Bin Laden is merely a boggart?


  • scott

    Anything that makes fun of Bin-Ladin is OK with me. If it makes Al-Kida a comedy I’m all for it

  • Anne

    Mocking Bin Laden is a far cry from mocking 9/11. The pen is mightier than the sword and satire is an effective weapon. Any straightforward attack on Bin Laden, whether with weapons or words, only increases his glamor to a lot of the world. Making him look ridiculous is a better way to undermine him.

  • PurboPathik

    Its idiotic to write about a movie and comment about it without watching it. This is not a movie about Bin Laden, it is mostly a satire about how the ‘War on Terror’ was run by Bush. It is of the same genre as Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove. Watch it. Tere Bin Laden is a hilarious movie!

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