We weren't aware that fictional television shows had to serve as tourism ads for their filming locations. However, the tourism leaders of Lebanon apparently feel differently, according to the Daily Mail.
Lebanese Tourism Minister Fadi Abboud is reportedly unhappy with the portrayal of Beirut in Showtime's hit series Homeland, and is planning to sue the show's director and producer. A recent episode, set on a street in West Beirut, portrays the area as dangerous and run-down, when in reality it is a bustling spot with shops and cafes.
Adding to the insult, the "Beirut" scenes were not shot in the city, but rather filmed in Tel Aviv, Israel. (Israel and Lebanon have a history of conflict with each other.) Says Abboud, "This kind of film damages the image of Lebanon—it is not fair to us and it's not true, it is not portraying reality."
Abboud picked an unfortunate time to raise this issue, as there was a car bombing in central Beirut today (Friday) which killed at least eight people and wounded approximately 80, according to Reuters.
What do you think? Would you let a fictional television show influence where you visit on vacation? Tell us in the comments!
(Photo: Lebanon - Beirut Cityscape via Shutterstock)