Malaysia’s Next Top Imam

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Imam Muda (Young Leader), a new reality show in Malaysia,  pits 10 young men against each other who each want to become the next top imam. (via AP)

The show started out with 1,000 contestants who were asked to recite prayers and quizzed on current affairs. Background checks were also performed to weed out contestants with shady pasts. Now only ten imams remain.

Why do the show?

“We want to prove that our young Muslim Malaysians can keep up with the times,” Izelan Basar, the show’s creator, told the Associated Press. “We chose the brightest, most devout men for this program — young men whom our female viewers now want for their husbands or sons-in-law.” (Women are not allowed to audition for the show).

Producers also say that Imam Muda is the most-watched program on its channel; their Facebook fan page already boasts over 31,000 fans.

The winner gets an all expense paid trip to Mecca, a car, a job as a prayer leader, a scholarship to study in Saudia Arabia, $6400 and a laptop. Now that’s a pretty sweet deal.