An order to pull a “blasphemous” film from Netflix because it portrays Jesus Christ as a gay man has been lifted.
The president of Brazil’s supreme court has issued an order that allows Netflix to continue to show The First Temptation of Christ, defending the right to free speech.
The move follows a complaint by Netflix to the court in the wake of Rio de Janeiro judge Benedicto Abicair’s demand that the film be removed.
Netflix said, via Premier Christian News: “We strongly support artistic expression and we’ll be fighting to defend this important principle, which goes to the heart of great storytelling.”
Judge Abicair’s ruling had revived scrutiny on what his critics call censorship under the country’s far-right government of president Jair Bolsonaro. The president’s administration has vowed to fight “cultural Marxism” and openly supports Christian values.
Abicair issued the order earlier this week in response to a Change.org petition launched by a Brazilian Catholic organisation that said the “blasphemous” film had hurt the “honour of millions of Catholics”. Brazil has more Catholics than any other country in the world.
The parody film, which was run as a Christmas special, was created by Brazilian YouTube comedy group Porta dos Fundos. Its headquarters were targeted with petrol bombs on Christmas Eve 2019 in response to the film.
No one was injured in the attack and a video circulating days later on social media showed three men claiming responsibility.