Muslim cartoonists are today using advanced technology - similar to that employed by forensic animators to reconstruct the death of Princess Diana - to entertain children.
Umar al-Jasri is working for an Oakland animation studio on a ten episode web series for children. The cartoon will feature a talking cat named Socks who drives a wind-up car. Although the cat often crashes the car as part of a running joke throughout the series, he usually emerges unscathed.
When the suggestion was put to al-Jasri that forensic experts may have used similar technology to animate reconstructions of Princess Diana's fatal car crash in a Paris tunnel over a decade ago, the Muslim animator readily admits that they probably did.
“You know, techniques like [the ones I use] would be rendered from real life situations. So it is very possible that any reconstruction technology that was used in the late Lady Di re-enactments by forensic animators are probably used today by other animators. Particularly if a previous version of the same software was used.”
There are other Muslims working in animation who employ similar technology – some of them even dealing with real world killings.
Not only are children being entertained, but in many cases people are watching historical documentaries that feature world changing assassinations of Western leaders. Many well-meaning members of society have little idea that they are unwittingly adding to viewing figures by simply watching the shows.
Indeed, Mustafar Khalid Banza – working at a multimedia firm in Silicon Valley – readily admits to participating in a computer generated reconstruction of the Robert Kennedy assassination at a previous place of employment that was created especially for a television documentary.
“Sure, I worked on the Bobby Kennedy thing – I worked on the hotel layout,” Banza admits. “It was interesting – I didn’t deal with any of the forensics stuff, the bullet trajectory. That was all somebody else.”
Banza holds down his job at the multimedia company, but he also has his own sideline as a freelance designer. When asked if he uses the same technology today that he has previously used – to re-enact the deaths of leaders of democracy – he shakes his head, frowning. He then claims that right now he is working on a Flash intro to a client’s site that is “pretty much all my own work, replicating Pac Man code. You want me to show you?”