After today’s news that Beauty and the Beast release has been postponed in Malaysia, there have been many speculations as to why. One major reason speculated is the inclusion of a gay character in the movie. Many of us will find this particular reason rubbish and it seems, there is at least one Malaysian Minister that agrees as well.
Current Malaysian Minister for Tourism and Culture, Dato’ Seri Mohamed Nazri bin Abdul Aziz, has come out and said that the postponement of the movie, for whatever perceived reason, is rubbish.
“I think it’s ridiculous. Come on. I mean it is in the storyline so you don’t do that if it’s there.
“You don’t ban a film because of a gay character.
“All these years even without the gay character in the Beauty and the Beast, there are also gays in the world. I don’t think it is going to influence anyone.
“We need to think, we must allow people to decide for themselves,” said Nazri according to a report in The Malay Mail Online.
As mentioned before, no particular reason has been given as to why the movie has been postponed but many have strongly speculated it’s due to the “gay” characteristics/moment of LeFou during the singing of the song Gaston from a promo clip of the movie.
The purported “gayness” of the character has caused some controversies the world over. One lawmaker in Russia had proposed banning the movie in the country, calling it “a blatant, shameless propaganda of sin and perverted sexual relationships”, a drive-in movie theater in US state of Alabama has banned the movie from it’s premise because of the LeFou character, and even Singapore’s Anglican church has come out with an advisory about the movie because of the purported gay element. It shouldn’t be a surprise that eventually, the Malaysian censorship board would follow suit (even though it still isn’t confirmed if this is the main reason for the postponement).
So while many of us don’t feel that it’s even an issue to the point of postponement or ban of the movie, it’s also nice to see some common sense coming from our local leaders.
Hopefully, this would speed up the new release date of the movie in our theatres.
Image of the minister from The Malay Mail