The third question of Fatwa no. 2442
Q 3: What is the ruling on acting the Sahabah (Companions of the Prophet, may Allah be pleased with them) in school theaters?
A: The Council of Senior Scholars previously reviewed this question and issued a decree as follows:
1. Allah (Exalted be He) has praised and set clear the high status of the Sahabah. Thus, acting any of them on stage or on the screen is contrary to this Divine praise and is detrimental to the high status and honor which Allah has bestowed upon them.
2. Representing any of them in this way exposes them to mockery and ridicule. Actors are usually people who have no room for righteousness, piety, and Islamic morals in their lives. Moreover, those who put on plays are doing so as a means to earn money, and no matter how much they try to avoid it, it will involve some lying and backbiting. Acting the Sahabah (may Allah be pleased with them) may have an effect on their status in the hearts and minds of the Muslims, or diminish the reverence they have for them, and paves the way for arousing doubts in Muslims about their religion and disputes over the personalities of the Sahabah.
It also necessarily implies that one of the actors will play the role of Abu Jahl and other disbelievers, thus he will have to utter words insulting Bilal, and insulting the Messenger (peace be upon him) and the Message of Islam that he brought. Undoubtedly, this is a great evil. This act may be targeted to confuse the Muslims about their creed, the Book of Allah and Sunnah of their Prophet (peace be upon him).
3. If it is claimed that this serves the interest of calling people to Islam and spreading noble Islamic morals and etiquette through showing exact biographies of those Sahabah is simply an assumption and wishful thinking. Whoever knows the real nature and aims of actors will realize that this kind of acting is in sharp contrast to the real nature of the actors, their standards, lives, and behaviors.
4. It is basically stated in the principles of Shari`ah (Islamic law) that if a certain matter is definitely or probably harmful, it will be forbidden.
Acting the Sahabah may serve some interest, but the harm done by this is far greater than any good that might be achieved. Accordingly, to protect those interests and ward off harm, and to preserve the honorable status of the Sahabah of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), we must not allow that.
May Allah grant us success! May peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and Companions!
Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta’
Chairman : `Abdul-`Aziz ibn `Abdullah ibn Baz