“Beauty and the Beast” could be banned in Russia if it’s found to violate a Russian law prohibiting “gay propaganda,” the BBC reports.
Vitaly Milonov, an MP of the United Russia party, has asked the country’s culture minister to screen the film prior to its March 16 Russian release and to “take measures to totally ban” it if the film contains “elements of propaganda of homosexuality.”
A Russian law enacted in 2013 prohibits the spread of “gay propaganda” to minors.
Culture minister Vladimir Medinsky noted, “As soon as we get a copy of the film with relevant paperwork for distribution, we will consider it according to the law.”
Earlier this week, director Bill Condon told Attitude Magazine that “Beauty and the Beast” would feature an “exclusively gay moment” involving Josh Gad’s character, LeFou, the buddy of vain villain Gaston (Luke Evans).
“LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston,” Condon told the magazine. “He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings. And Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it. And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie.”
Earlier this week, an Alabama movie theater decided to pull its scheduled screenings of Disney’s live-action “Beauty and the Beast” remake because of the film’s inclusion of a “homosexual character.”
“For those that do not know ‘Beauty and the Beast’ is ‘premiering’ their first homosexual character. The producer also says at the end of the movie ‘there will be a surprise for same-sex couples.’ If we can not take our 11 year old grand daughter and 8 year old grandson to see a movie we have no business watching it,” a staff member for the Henagar Drive-In Theatre posted on Facebook on Friday.