There’s a lot of buzz surrounding a particular scene in Light yearand now the filmmakers and the star are ready to address the controversy.
As Variety reported in March, a homosexual kiss from the next Pixar film toy story The spinoff was originally cut from the animated feature, only to be restored after employees and LGBTQ allies of the Disney-owned company sent a joint statement to studio executives protesting the censorship of “openly gay affection “.
The studio’s about-face came as Disney faced intense scrutiny from its staff over the company’s perceived lax response to the controversial so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Florida.
Related Video: Pixar Reinstates ‘Lightyear’ Gay Kiss After Backlash From Disney’s Response To Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill
“We always wanted this relationship to be in there,” Light year director Angus MacLane (Finding Dory) tells Yahoo Entertainment about the marriage between Alisha Hawthorne (Uzo Aduba) — Buzz Lightyear’s (Chris Evans) best friend and fellow Space Ranger — and the woman she’s growing old with. “We had this [kiss] in there, and they were like, ‘This is how we’re going to do it now…’
“What you saw is what we wanted, so I’m really happy with the end result. We’re just surprised it’s such a hubbub.
MacLane wants to say he’s surprised the studio initially took issue with the scene, not that his employees complained about his expulsion.
The scene will cost Disney some business: As reported on Monday, Light year is banned in 14 countries in the Middle East and Asia because of kissing, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Kuwait, Egypt, Indonesia and Malaysia. Though it’s not the first major Hollywood film to be shunned from these nations.
“The point is to show a relationship that’s loving and lasting, because…well, isn’t that beautiful modeling for everyone to have? That we have a relationship that lasts a lifetime,” the producer said. Galyn Susman at Yahoo Entertainment.
Aduba, the Orange is the new black Breakout, which voices Alisha, also expressed gratitude to Pixar for restoring the scene — and Disney continues to take a broader stance on representation and inclusion.
“I’m glad he’s here,” Aduba told Yahoo. “This film opens up a whole new world of how stories can be told, how stories can be revisited. And I think it’s amazing that Disney-Pixar has chosen to take this space to not only include moments like that, but to include so many different faces and so many stories in one movie so that every kid – young and old – sitting in these audiences can see a piece of themselves in the story.
Light year opens Friday.
Watch the trailer: