This is… Xerxes!

Xerxes in 300
King Xerxes played by Rodrigo Santoro in Warner Bros.’ 300.

King Xerxes bas relief300 comes out on DVD today. There was controversy around the time of its theatrical release, especially among Iranians, about how Persians, and in particular, King Xerxes, were depicted in the film. Frank Miller’s Xerxes was a giant who looked like Dhalsim with makeup on.

You can see in the bas relief carving on the right how the ancient Persians recorded Xerxes’s appearance. Let’s see how Hollywood has portrayed him over the years.

Xerxes in One Night with the King
King Xerxes played by Luke Goss in last year’s One Night with the King. Still a little too pretty but definitely regal looking.

Xerxes in 300 Spartans
King Xerxes played by David Farrar in the 1962 film 300 Spartans. Perhaps the closest likeness to the bas relief above.

Xerxes in Veggie Tales' Esther
King Xerxes played by a vegetable in VeggieTales: Esther, the Girl Who Became Queen. Should be the ultimate indignity one can heap upon the portrayal of a Persian king but considering that the rest of the cast were also vegetables, we should let this slide. Besides, I hear kids love the video.

3 comments on “This is… Xerxes!

  1. ben on

    yup its typical of hollywood. its so annoying now cos when they make movies based in ancient times its always the romans and greeks that are shown as heroes while all the rest are shown as enemies who are uneducated ruthless and barbarians. its just sad. its just so annoying to see thhat happen. i personally hated 300 i think it was one of the worst movies ever made. now if something like this were said about the americans, or the british or christianity there would be banning and sensoring. im tired of movies that show persians as barbaric.

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