The open display of same-sex love does not go down well in some Arab countries. Not even if the display is only animated. That's why the "Toy Story" offshoot "Lightyear" now ends up in them on the index.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and other countries in the Middle East do not show the animated film "Lightyear". The reason is a same-sex kissing scene in the new Pixar film, reports the industry journal "Variety".
"Lightyear" is a prequel to the "Toy Story" films from the famous animation company. It tells the story of astronaut Buzz Lightyear, who made his screen debut as an action figure in Toy Story. The lesbian space traveler Alisha, who kisses her partner on the mouth, also plays a role in the film.
The scene was apparently too daring for the countries of the Arabian Peninsula. "Lightyear" initially passed the censorship of the United Arab Emirates. But after protests on social media about the "insult to Muslims and Islam," those responsible backed down, according to Variety.
Other countries in the region that Variety doesn't name aside from Kuwait aren't showing the film either. In Saudi Arabia, the Pixar parent company Disney had not even tried. Other in-house films such as "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" or "Eternals" had recently not made it through the censorship there. Reason were also homosexual figures.
In fact, Walt Disney Pictures initially censored the kissing scene themselves. Only after an open letter from Pixar employees did the entertainment giant give in, so that the relevant passage was reinserted. Disney generally has reservations about "almost any moment of overt homosexual affection," the letter said. And that despite the fact that Disney publicly shows itself to be diverse and tolerant.
"Lightyear" will start in German cinemas on June 16th. In the US, the film will be released a day later.