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‘Lightyear’: Disney animated film banned in Middle East over lesbian kiss

‘Lightyear’: Disney animated film banned in Middle East over lesbian kiss
Written by insideindyhomes

In the new Disney film “Lightyear” two female cartoon characters kiss. Because of this one scene, the Pixar flick, which is set to hit theaters worldwide on Thursday, will be banned in 14 countries in the Middle East and Asia.

In the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Kuwait, Indonesia, Malaysia and Lebanon, among others, the animated film has not received a playing license.

Homosexuality is a crime in many Middle Eastern countries. According to the South China Morning Post, it is also unlikely that the animated film will be released in China, the world’s largest cinema market.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) media regulator tweeted that the film was “not approved for public screening in all cinemas in the UAE as it violates the country’s media content standards.” Country.

Six months ago, the United Arab Emirates announced that they no longer wanted to censor international cinema films. Instead, a minimum age restriction of 21 should be introduced for certain adult films. “Lightyear”, approved in Germany by the FSK from 6, was completely banned.

Captain Buzz Lightyear ohne HelmPhoto: Disney/Pixar

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Captain Buzz Lightyear without a helmetPhoto: Disney/Pixar

Lightyear is a prequel to Pixar’s Toy Story films. The focus is on astronaut Buzz Lightyear (voiced by Hollywood star Chris Evans). The kiss between Buzz Lightyear’s best friend and colleague, lesbian space traveler Alisha Hawthorne, and her partner can be seen in the first 30 minutes of the film.

Walt Disney Pictures first cut the kissing scene and caved in after an open letter of protest from Pixar employees. The trade journal Variety quoted from the letter in March: Disney has reservations about “almost every moment of overt homosexual affection”.

That some countries are banning “Lightyear” has disappointed the actors who lent their voices to the comic book heroes. “It’s great that we’re part of something that’s making progress in social inclusion, but it’s frustrating that there are still places that aren’t how they should be,” says Chris Evans, 41.

His colleague Taika Waititi (46, the voice of Mo Morrison) told Reuters: “We hope for a time when we don’t even have to have this discussion anymore, when we can see a film and not even bat an eyelid have to.”

And further: “We don’t have to think: ‘Oh, wow, strange.’ That’s not strange. It’s normal and should be normalized. And if the small steps that the studios are taking – sometimes it might feel small – but they are steps, and they are steps toward normalizing humanity and love.”

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