warning Hi, we've moved to USCANNENBERGMEDIA.COM. Visit us there!

Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Sam Becile/Bacile/Bossil/Bassiel/Basseley, Desert Warriors And The Point Of The Muslim Video

Paresh Dave |
September 12, 2012 | 7:12 p.m. PDT

Executive Director

Screenshot from the film.
Screenshot from the film.

UPDATE: The feds have justification for holding the permit for the film from the public.

It's still unknown who exactly is behind the short film "Innocence of Muslims" that apparently sparked the protest in Egypt (and maybe Libya), what the point of the film is and whether it was actually fully produced.

The origins of the film appear to date back to August 2011, when a Sam Bossil sought a permit to film a movie then titled, Desert Warriors, in Los Angeles County. A copy of the permit could not immediately be obtained by Neon Tommy, but a spokesperson for FilmLA confirmed its existence.

The latest report from the Associated Press says Bossil/Bacile/Bassile/Basseley is a pseudonym used by Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. The AP said other aliases included Nicola Bacily and Erwin Salameh.

--BuzzFeed talked to a Jimmy Israel who may have worked on the movie.

--The casting call for the film has been found online, but no one appears to have tracked down the listed director, Alan Roberts.

--Gawker interviewed an actress in the film who said "the Bacile" was Egyptian. No one knows if that's accurate though as Jaweed Kaleem aptly put it in an article for the Huffington Post.

The New York Times reported Wednesday night that "The video gained international attention after a version dubbed in Arabic was publicized in the Egyptian media and when a Florida pastor, Terry Jones, began promoting the video along with his own proclamation of Sept. 11 as 'International Judge Muhammad Day.'"

Like reporter Paresh Dave on Facebook, follow him on Twitter, circle him on Google+ or send him an e-mail.



Craig Gillespie directed this true story about "the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

Watch USC Annenberg Media's live State of the Union recap and analysis here.