Disney is standing its ground when it comes to that “exclusively gay moment” in the live-action retelling of “Beauty and the Beast.”
As revealed by director Bill Condon, this version of villainous sidekick LeFou realizes throughout the movie that he might have feelings for Gaston.
But Malaysia’s film censorship board has strict rules that restrict depictions of LGBTQ characters. It wanted a three-second clip featuring LeFou cut from the film.
Disney refused, saying it wouldn’t do that. For now, “Beauty and the Beast” won’t be released at all in Malaysia.
Now, to be fair, censor boards wouldn’t take issue with scenes in most Disney movies. But the studio has gone to great lengths to edit its films for cultural purposes.
In most versions of “Inside Out,” a young Riley hates eating broccoli. But kids in Japan like the vegetable, so Pixar reanimated the scene with green bell peppers instead, just for them.
Disney released a China-only version of “Iron Man 3.” In this case, it added four extra minutes that included more product placement and a Chinese character saving Tony Stark.
And more recently, Polynesian princess Moana was renamed Vaiana for European audiences because the word “Moana” is a registered brand in Spain and other territories.
Media outlets speculated the reason for the name change in Italy was because “Moana” was the name of a late famous porn star there, but Disney never said that was true.
As for the live-action “Beauty and the Beast,” Russia also had an issue with its gay character. The country will only let children watch the film if they’re with someone 16 years old and up.
The film is in U.S. theaters Friday.