An Oklahoma movie theater came under fire this week after it posted a sign warning parents of a “same-sex kissing scene” in Pixar’s Lightyear—which it has since removed—becoming the latest battleground over LGBTQ content on the big screen.
The warning of a same-sex kiss follows bans on the movie across the Middle East and at least one warning at a major theater in Peru advising moviegoers of “scenes with gender ideology” in the Toy Story spinoff.
The 89er Theatre in Kingfisher, Oklahoma, wrote in its warning that theater management “discovered” the same-sex kissing scene—within the first 30 minutes of the movie—after it had already booked the movie.
The theater reversed course Monday, telling Oklahoma’s ABC affiliate the movie would play “uninterrupted” without any fast-forwarding.
In response to box office reports and conservative backlash over the movie, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) tweeted Tuesday: “Buzz Lightyear went woke. The movie went broke.”
Lightyear was banned in Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E. and Kuwait over the same-sex kiss scene—and it wasn’t the first movie banned in the Middle East over same-sex content. Pixar’s Onward was banned in Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia in March 2020 for including an openly gay character. Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia refused to show the Marvel movie Eternals last November for including a same-sex couple.
Disney had originally scrapped the scene—involving a female space ranger and her wife—but added it back after Pixar animators called out Disney in a letter—obtained by Variety—for censoring “nearly every moment of overtly gay affection.” Chris Evans—who voices Buzz Lightyear—slammed opponents of the same-sex kiss last week as “idiots” who will “die off like dinosaurs.” The bans come three months after Disney CEO Bob Chapek opposed the Don’t Say Gay bill passed by Florida lawmakers in February, saying in a memo in April he was against the bill “from the outset.”
$50.5 million. That’s how much Pixar’s Lightyear—the PG-rated animated movie—made in its opening weekend, falling short of box office expectations.