Da Vinci Code, the Tom Hanks' movie based on the Dan Brown bestseller, has already run into trouble before its release in India next Friday. Roman Catholics in Bombay have called it an attack on their faith. Protest marches have already been held; signature petitions and fasts-unto-death are being promised if the screening goes ahead.
They argue that Brown's premise that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and produced children, whose descendants are alive today, is flawed and offensive. They say the book was bad enough; the impact of the movie will be more serious and long-lasting. Etcetera.
Questions: Should the Indian government ban the movie because it is is offensive to religious sentiments? Should the interests of 18 million Roman Catholics take precedence over the rest of film-goers? If Satanic Verses could be banned by reading a magazine review, can Da Vinci Code be spared? Is the main premise of the book so injurious when Brown claims they are based on authentic documents? If we start banning movies and books and paintings at the drop of a protest, will there be anything left at all? Tell us.