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Disney’s Latest Film “Lightyear” Banned in Muslim World Over Same-Sex Kissing Scene

By: Chenwei Ren

Disney’s latest animated film, Lightyear, was banned across much of the Muslim world as it premiered last Thursday, which included a scene of the brief kiss between a lesbian couple. The Walt Disney Co. stated that Thirteen nations and the Palestiniatin territory have barred the Pixar film.

Lightyear, serving as one of the movies to one of the most popular Disney movie franchises, Toy Story, included a female character briefly kissing her female partner in one short scene in the film. This, apparently proved too much for censors in many Muslim-majority nations where same-sex relationships are often criminalized. These thirteen nations include: Bahrain, Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and the United Arab Emirates.

Many Muslims consider gays and lesbians to be sinful, and in some parts of the Arab world, members of the LGBTQ+ community have been arrested and sentenced to prison. In some extreme cases, some countries even maintain the death penalty.

Chris Evans, the voice actor of Buzz Lightyear, expressed his dissatisfaction to The Associated Press earlier this week at the premiere of Lightyear in London. “Yeah, it’s frustrating,” he states. “It feels good to be a part of something that is making social progress, but it’s with this ribbon of bittersweet frustration that at the same time, there are still places that have not caught up.”

Studios have allowed censors to cut films in global distribution for content in the past. Recently, Disney has faced protests from activists and its own staff over their CEO Bob Chapek’s slow response to publicly.

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