Pixar’s ‘Onward’ banned in the Middle East due to lesbian relationship reference

The reference in question has also been censored in Russia

New Disney/Pixar film Onward has been banned in multiple Middle Eastern countries due to a reference to a lesbian relationship.

It was revealed last month that the film would feature Pixar’s first ever lesbian character.

As Deadline report, officials in Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia have banned the film from its cinemas due to a specific reference to a same-sex relationship.

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The scene in question concerns the film’s two lead characters (voiced by Chris Pratt and Tom Holland), who get into a conversation about parenting with two female police officers.

The character Specter, voiced by Lena Waithe, then comments: “It’s not easy being a new parent – my girlfriend’s daughter got me pulling my hair out, okay?”

As well as the film being banned completely in the handful of Middle Eastern countries, cinemas in Russia will censor the scene, changing “girlfriend” to “partner”.

It follows the country censoring scenes in Rocketman and Avengers: Endgame last year due to LGBT references.

According to Onward producer Kori Rae, the idea to include a lesbian character in the film “just happened”.

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“The scene, when we wrote it, was kind of fitting and it opens up the world a little bit, and that’s what we wanted,” she told Yahoo.

Last year, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige discussed the Marvel Cinematic Universe‘s plans to include more LGBTQ characters.

Speaking to i09, Feige said: “You look at the success of Captain Marvel and Black Panther. We want the movies to reflect the audience and we want every member of our global audience to see themselves reflected on the screen. And that’s what we’ve been doing for a long time. And certainly, that’s what we’re focusing on going forward.”

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