14 countries, including the United Arab Emirates and Malaysia, have announced they will not show Disney and Pixar Studios’ Lightyear, a spin-off of the popular Toy Story series. Social media users claim that the film features a same-sex kiss.
Intended as a prequel to Toy Story, the film follows Buzz Lightyear’s career and adventures as a space ranger. One of Lightyear’s co-workers is a space ranger named Hawthorne who marries another woman. A scene about their romantic relationship shows a kiss between the two women.
Some of the other countries that have banned the film are Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Egypt and Lebanon. China could join the list – the country asked Disney to cut the film, which the film’s producer Galyn Susman said was denied.
According to the Twitter account for the Media Inspectorate For the UAE, the film “is not licensed for public screening in all cinemas in the UAE as it violates the country’s media content standards”.
“We’re not going to cut anything, especially something as important as the loving and inspiring relationship that shows Buzz what he’s missing from the choices he’s making, so that won’t be cut,” Susman told Reuters. In March, however, the scene was reportedly cut and then reinserted after requests from allies and Pixar employees.
Disney’s recently released film Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness faced a similar backlash for having a gay character named America Chavez. The superhero film has also been banned in some countries including Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
Taking to social media, some people have expressed frustration that their country has banned the film given its mainstream media representation of the LGBTQ+ community.
“Wow, they really banished Lightyear here just for a same-sex kiss.” tweeted Another person. “Malaysia is always disappointing.”
“Buzz Lightyear has been banned in 14 countries for lesbian kissing. Unfortunately not surprising, but still gross,” another tweeted.
Lightyear is scheduled for release on Friday.
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*Initial publication: June 14, 2022 at 4:53 pm CDT
Kathleen is a Honolulu-based freelance writer, editor, and communications strategist published by The New York Times, Vice, Huffington Post, Hana Hou! and others was published. She has worked in the communications departments of the Honolulu Museum of Art, the ACLU of Hawaii, and the Hawaii Community Foundation. When she’s not writing, you can find her in the ocean, walking her rescue poi dog, or painting oil paintings.
https://www.dailydot.com/irl/lightyear-banned-same-sex-kiss/ “Lightyear” apparently banned in several countries because of same-sex kissing