The actor who shot to fame as the Devil in Tv mini-series The Bible has been dropped from the spin-off movie Son Of God because he looks too much like U.S. leader President Barack Obama.
Producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett have decided to leave Mohamen Mehdi Ouazanni's Satan out of the film after his appearance in the 2013 biblical series resulted in an Internet frenzy as political pundits suggested the actor was cast for his resemblance to Obama.
Downey, who also appeared in the series as Mary, tells The Hollywood Reporter, "It gives me great pleasure to tell you that the devil is on the cutting-room floor. This is now a movie about Jesus, the son of God, and the devil gets no more screen time.
"Someone made a comment that the actor who played the devil vaguely resembled our president, and suddenly the media went nuts. The next day, when I was sure everyone would only be talking about Jesus, they were talking about Satan instead.
"For our movie, Son of God, I wanted all of the focus to be on Jesus. I want his name to be on the lips of everyone who sees this movie, so we cast Satan out."