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“He didn’t even want a videographer at the wedding,” Shadia Amen said. “Then add five or six cameras.”

McDermott said he’s ready if there are any television viewers that don’t accept his conversion or marriage.

“If you attack me, I’ll excuse myself from it,” he said. “It’s not going to bother me. I did it because I love Shadia and out of respect for the family.”

Even seemingly offhand camera shots drive home the central message of the series. One time, a camera catches a woman, dressed head to toe in traditional garb, roller-blading down the street. She may look different than most Americans, but she enjoys the same mundane activities.

As much as she enjoyed the experience, Nawal Aoude admits filming was a roller coaster, particularly because she was pregnant. She pulls out a cellphone to show pictures of her new son.

“At the end of the show I want people to turn off the television set and if they see a woman in the hijab to just smile,” she said.