Disney’s Rebooted BEAUTY AND THE BEAST Is Not a Win for LGBT Activists
By Ben Kayser, Managing Editor
Last week the Internet nearly exploded when outspoken gay Director Bill Condon of the new live-action remake BEAUTY AND THE BEAST told the LGBT magazine Attitude this is the first Disney movie to have an “exclusively gay moment.” Referencing the character LeFou, a jovial and flamboyant sidekick character of the handsome villain Gaston. LeFou is said to be a person who wants to be Gaston one moment, and wants to kiss him the next.
Condon continued, “It may have been a long time coming but this is a watershed moment for Disney. . . . By representing same-sex attraction in this short but explicitly gay scene, the studio is sending out a message that this is normal and natural – and this is a message that will be heard in every country of the world, even countries where it’s still socially unacceptable or even illegal to be gay.”
At the Los Angeles press conference held March 5 in Beverly Hills, Condon simply said that their intent was to make the movie as “diverse” as possible.
While this drew praise from a few, audiences across the globe reacted in a firestorm, rightly angry that Disney would push an LGBT agenda in a remake of a beloved movie. One Alabama Drive-In theater has refused to show the movie already, and Russian lawmakers are considering whether or not to allow the movie to play in their country.
However, days later, Condon admits that it’s all been “overblown,” and actor Josh Gad who plays the supposed gay character LeFou told USA TODAY that the character’s sexuality wasn’t even in the script. Could it be that Disney is simply building publicity for their movie, and LGBT activists are eager to herald a beloved Disney movie as their own? The answer to both questions is yes!
Now, before I go any further, Movieguide® is one of the few, if not the only conservative faith-based publication reporting on BEAUTY AND THE BEAST having actually seen the whole movie. The proof is in the pudding, and truth be told, no matter what the Director, writer or studio says, you have to look at the movie itself to determine what it says. Movies are made by teams of sometimes thousands of people, and shouldn’t be left to the interpretation of one filmmaker talking to an LGBT magazine. We explore the supposed ‘gay moment’ (which is actually several gay moments) in our review here, but here is some very crucial information everyone should be aware of.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST is not a terrible movie, and includes some positive moments, which we detail in our review. That said, it DOES include politically correct sentiments, and gender bending implications regarding LeFou and a scene in which he dances with a henchman who in an earlier scene was shown enjoying wearing a dress. For those who don’t want to put aberrant ideas in their children’s minds, this is frustrating and annoying, and should warrant concern and discernment about taking their family to see it. Please read our full review before doing so.
However, I don’t believe we should deepen the “us vs. them” schism that already plagues a culture of identity politics in America by readily giving BEAUTY AND BEAST up as an LGBT anthem. We’ve seen this happen before with FROZEN, when some attempted to interpret the story as a “coming out of the closet” fairytale, something we debunked. Or FINDING DORY, which showed two women together in a very brief shot, whom some people thought were lesbians. Or even last year’s ZOOTOPIA, which some view as progressively liberal, but in reality, states that even if we are born a certain way (in this movie’s case, born as a meat-eating predator), we don’t have to live that way, but in fact can strive towards greater values (wait, I thought we were just supposed to accept who we are?).
In reality, FROZEN and ZOOTOPIA have themes that are actively against the narrative that LGBT and liberal activists try to push. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (2017) probably blurs the line more than any other movie Disney has made, but the fact still stands that if this is the furthest Disney has ever gone in pushing the LGBT agenda, it’s a pretty weak push, and it proves how influential family audiences truly are. Last year, the GLAAD Media Awards, which celebrates media that pushes the LGBT cause, only nominated two movies in the Wide Release category. This is because movie studios know that including homosexual content in their movies drastically reduces box office returns, as Movieguide® has shown every year in our annual comprehensive economic analysis.
Ultimately, time will tell whether the controversy hurts this BEAUTY AND THE BEAST remake. If the tens of millions of conservative families who frequent Disney movies choose to pass on it, it will affect it greatly. Either way, don’t be swayed by inflammatory headlines or controversial quotes from directors. Look at the facts, be discerning and make choices that align with biblical values.
– Sources: USA Today, 03/03/17 and Attitude, 03/06/17.