Beauty and the Beast: Russia mulls ban on Disney film over "exclusively gay moment"

Asmita Kundu
Beauty and the Beast

Emma Watson starrer Disney's Beauty and the Beast faced backlash in Russia over an "exclusively gay moment." 

The film features a gay character named LeFou (Josh Gad) sharing an intimate moment with Gaston (Luke Evans), as a subplot of the film. And, this is reportedly the first ever homosexuality shown in the history of Disney films. 

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A Russian politician Vitaly Milonov, who is also the member of the United Russia party, has reportedly urged the culture minister Vladimir Medinsky to check if the scene violates the law. The Russian MP also referred it as a "shameless propaganda of sin".

"As soon as we get a copy of the film with relevant paperwork for distribution, we will consider it according to the law," Medinsky told BBC.

According to the 2013 legislation, homosexuality is described as "non-traditional sexual relations" in Russia.

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The Disney film created outrage in Russia following a drive-in theatre in Alabama refused to show the film because of the portrayal of a gay moment.

While speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, actor Josh Gad explained the intention of using the homosexual storyline, "an element that added a really beautiful complexity to his character."

He further added, "There's also a lovely moment at the end of the film that I think I'll let speak for itself. Like many of the additions to this movie, I think it's a beautiful, subtle moment that does its job and is left alone."

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In response to the backlash, Beauty and the Beast director Bill Condon stated: "It's all been overblown... it's part of just what we had fun with."

My message is: This is a movie for everyone. I'm sad about that theater but there are 4,000 theaters showing the movie. I hope everybody moves past that and just goes to take pleasure in what we made."

Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans starrer Beauty and the Beast is slated to release in Russia on March 16, 2017.

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