Oklahoma Theater warns against same-sex kissing in ‘Lightyear’, backtracks

  • An Oklahoma theater has warned patrons about the same-sex kiss in “Lightyear.”
  • His note said the theater would “fast-forward” through the scene, but it never finished.
  • Disney, the studio behind Lightyear, has been rocked by controversy over its lack of LGBTQ representation.

A movie theater in Oklahoma posted and then removed a note on a window for customers over the weekend about a same-sex kiss in Disney and Pixar’s “Lightyear,” saying the scene would fast forward.

The independent 89er Theater in Kingfisher, Oklahoma released the note, which NBC News read:

“Parents Attention: The management of this theater discovered after booking ‘Lightyear’ that there was a same-sex kissing scene within the first 30 minutes of the Pixar film. We’re going to do everything we can to fast-forward through this scene, but it may not be accurate.”

Local NBC affiliate KFOR reported that the sign was gone Monday morning. Local ABC affiliate KOCO 5 reported that the theater’s owner said the theater never actually tampered with the film and it was shown non-stop.

The 89er Theater did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A representative from Disney, which released the film, also did not immediately respond.

Disney has recently been embroiled in controversy over the lack of LGBTQ+ representation in its films, stemming from its initial silence on Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law, which bans discussions of gender and sexuality in kindergarten through third grade.

Employees at Pixar, the Disney-owned animation studio that produced “Lightyear,” accused Disney leadership in a March statement of demanding cuts in “almost every moment of overt gay affection” in their films.

Disney initially removed the brief same-sex kiss from “Lightyear,” but restored it after backlash from Pixar, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“Lightyear” was banned in 14 markets in the Middle East and Southeast Asia because of the kiss.

The film opened in US theaters over the weekend at US$50.5 million, below forecasts. It’s one of the worst opening weekends for a Pixar film.

It faced stiff competition from the likes of Top Gun: Maverick and Jurassic World: Dominion in a theatrical market still recovering from the pandemic. Confusing marketing about the film’s premise may also have contributed to its lackluster box office.

It’s also the first Pixar film in over two years to hit theaters rather than directly on Disney+, and many consumers may have been expecting the film to stream.

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