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Anti-Islam film actor to file suit against creator

September 18, 2012 7:49:49 PM PDT
Violent protests continued Tuesday in reaction to an anti-Islam film called "Innocence of Muslims." Another actor in the inflammatory film is speaking out against it. The actor is laying the groundwork for a lawsuit against the embattled film maker.

"If any of us had known, we would not have done it," said actor Dan Sutter, who appeared in the film.

Sutter denounces the film that has ignited violence across the Arab world: American embassies torched, diplomats killed.

Sutter is the latest cast member to emerge saying he was duped. He says he was never told about the video's anti-Islam content.

"I am sickened and I am disgusted by not only the offensive stuff that was thrown out there, the loss of lives and the absolute misuse of the film industry," said Sutter.

Now comes international legal action aimed at filmmaker Nakoula Bassely Nakoula, who has left his Cerritos home with his family and gone into hiding.

An Egyptian prosecutor has issued arrest warrants for seven people, including Nakoula and Florida-based pastor Terry Jones, who has stated he was contacted to promote the film. The Egyptian prosecutor's office charges them with insulting Islam and spreading false information.

In Los Angeles, a separate civil lawsuit against Nakoula, aka "Sam Bacile," will be filed by Dan Sutter's attorney, Grace Ayers, for defamation and breach of contract.

"I think that Sam Bacile, the production company, whomever, induced him to participate in the film fraudulently, and I think that's where the cause of action lies," said Ayers.

Also distancing himself from the film is Joseph Nasrallah, the head of Media for Christ, the Monrovia-based production facility where some of the scenes of "Innocence of Muslims" were shot.

Nasrallah spoke to Web author Pamela Geller, who told Eyewitness News, that Nasrallah fears for his life and the safety of his family in Egypt.

Nasrallah says: "[Nakoula] used the name of my organization, Media for Christ, to obtain the permit he needed. He did so without my knowledge or permission."

Nasrallah says his staff was on vacation during the filming.

Actor Dan Sutter, who shot at the production house, says Nakoula was the only one calling the shots.

"It was obvious, it was really clear that he was in charge," said Sutter.

Looking back now, Sutter says he remembers many odd things about the shoot: Nakoula did not give the actors their scripts until they were on site and ready to shoot. And when they were done, Nakoula wanted the scripts returned.

As for the Egyptian lawsuit, legal observers say it is largely symbolic, a move to placate public anger.


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