In addition to being a landmark in contemporary history, the September 11 attacks even affected the premiere of The Clone (2001). The serial was scheduled to open three weeks after the tragic date. Globo, however, had to rethink the launch of the plot after the Islamic terrorist group Al-Qaeda announced the authorship of the attacks in the United States.
Soap opera director Jayme Monjardim gave an interview to Gshow and said the production had to recalculate a new look at The Clone.
The team feared that the terrorist group’s involvement could impact the soap opera — which was based on a story contextualized in the Islamic world: “There was a lot of care, a lot of preparation. We doubted, at some point, what it would be like to launch the soap opera” , remembered Monjardim.
Despite the concerns, the summit understood that the screening of O Clone would show the Brazilian audience that the culture of the Middle East could not be reduced to the tragedy of September 11th:
But we realized how important it was to see people having a correct image of the Muslim world, and not just this atrocity that was the attack on the Twin Towers.
The decision proved to be assertive in the following months. Clone became a hit at nine o’clock, and the public fell in love with the story of the forbidden love of Jade (Giovanna Antonelli) and Lucas (Murilo Benício).
Jayme Monjardim even believes that the popularity of the plot happened because of the viewer’s sudden curiosity about Islamic culture.
The curiosity for the Muslim world was very great. Everyone wanted to know more about this universe, about religion… I had a lot of help from the Islamic community, because we wanted to keep all respect, all the culture. It was a very learning process.