The new Disney-Pixar film Lightyear, based on the Toy Story character, has been banned in 14 countries for a small reason.
The latest Disney-Pixar movie,light year† opens in Australian cinemas today – but not every country will be so lucky.
Up to 14 countries in Asia and the Middle East are reportedly refusing to show the children’s film due to a same-sex kiss.
Indonesia isn’t outright banning it, but they suggest that “the film’s owner is thinking about their audience in Indonesia, where an LGBT kissing scene is still considered sensitive”. Indonesia is the world’s largest Muslim-majority country.
Next door, the Film Censorship Board of Malaysia has refused to show the film without cuts. China – the world’s largest film market – is also reportedly not showing the film.
Homosexuality is still a crime in many countries in the Middle East, so it’s not surprising that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) released a tweet from the Media Regulatory Office of the country’s Ministry of Youth and Culture stating that the film “is not licensed for public showing in all cinemas in the UAE, due to the violation of the country’s media content standards”.
Disney, for their part, has so far refused to make any changes. So what’s all the fuss about?
light yeardirected by Angus MacLane from find doryis a sci-fi action-adventure based on the fictional film in Toy Story where Andy’s Buzz Lightyear toys came from.
It follows the story of Buzz Lightyear, a space keeper desperately trying to right a wrong and get his people off an alien planet.
The subplot? His best friend and commander, Alisha Hawthorne, stays behind to run the colony from the ground up. As she does, we see her great joy as she falls in love and starts a family. The ‘controversial’ kiss? A quick kiss between Hawthorne and her wife.
That said, it’s not like Disney hasn’t sparked a lot of its own controversy over how it treats the LGBTQI+ community.
Earlier this year, when Florida introduced the “Don’t Say Gay” law, the Walt Disney company was criticized for not speaking out against it — despite being a company that prides itself on an LGBTQI+-friendly culture.
After Disney employees staged strikes in protest and public pressure, Disney CEO Bob Chapek eventually denounced the law.