Disney+ Middle East won’t be adding Pixar’s new movie Lightyear to its library after deeming the film’s same-sex kiss too culturally sensitive for their audience.
Lightyear also failed to make it to other Middle East big screens, like the United Arab Emirates, which decided the film couldn’t be shown ‘due to its violation of the country’s media content standards,’ according to the Media Regulatory Office of the country’s Ministry of Youth and Culture.
‘The office confirms that all films screened in cinemas across the country are subject to follow-up and evaluation before the date of screening to the public, to ensure the safety of the circulated content according to the appropriate age classification,’ they said.
Fourteen Muslim-majority nations banned the Disney movie for its lesbian kiss.
The tweet included an image of the film’s poster with the profile image of its main character, Buzz Lightyear, with a ‘no’ symbol over it in red
The disappointing opening came after controversy over Disney’s decision to include a brief kiss between a lesbian couple in the movie and to replace the conservative star Tim Allen with Chris Evans as the voice of Buzz Lightyear
Banned: After the gay kiss was restored in Lightyear, the United Arab Emirates and Malaysia outlawed the animated blockbuster, and Disney+ Middle East won’t add the film to its library
Some countries, like Malaysia, told Disney they would release the film if the company made certain cuts to the movies, like the LGBT scenes.
Disney refused most of these requests and opted to not provide a theatrical release of the movie at all.
Lightyear, which depicts the origins of beloved Toy Story character Buzz Lightyear, flopped on its opening weekend in the United States, earning just $51.7 million after weeks of controversy.
Not holding back: Tim Allen has slammed the Toy Story spin-off film Lightyear after the conservative star was replaced
Interesting: Chris Evans took over the role of Buzz Lightyear in the origin story prequel, as he is pictured with a statue of the character in London earlier this month
Actor Tim Allen, who voiced Buzz Lightyear in the first four Toy Story films, was axed from the latest film in favor of Chris Evans, who plays Captain America in many Marvel movies.
Allen voiced Buzz Lightyear alongside Tom Hanks who voiced cowboy Woody in the 1995 Pixar film Toy Story, which scooped $373 million at the box office and has since become of the most well-loved animated films of all time.
He then reprised the role in several sequel films and animated shorts, and voiced the animated astro-toy as recently as 2019 in Toy Story 4.
Many Toy Story fans had speculated whether Allen being replaced by Chris Evans in the prequel was a politically motivated decision based on Allen’s support of the Republican Party.
‘This is like Thirties Germany. I don’t know what happened. If you’re not part of the group, ”You know what we believe is right,” I go, ”Well, I might have a problem with that”. I’m a comedian, I like going on both sides.’
He added: ‘I literally don’t preach anything. What I’ve done is I’ve just not joined into, as I call it, the ”we culture”. I’m not telling anybody else how to live. I don’t like that.’
‘This is like Thirties Germany. I don’t know what happened. If you’re not part of the group, “You know what we believe is right,” I go, “Well, I might have a problem with that.” I’m a comedian, I like going on both sides.’
He added: ‘I literally don’t preach anything. What I’ve done is I’ve just not joined into, as I call it, the we culture.” I’m not telling anybody else how to live. I don’t like that.’