Pixar employees claim Disney censors LGBTQ love in its films: 'Every moment of overtly gay affection is cut'
Certain employees of animation studio Pixar have claimed that their parent company Disney has an anti-gay attitude that reflects in the corporate heads routinely censoring any gay affection in their films.
As debate about Florida's infamous 'Don't Say Gay' Bill escalates, some employees of Disney's animation production house Pixar have claimed that the corporate heads of their parent company Disney routinely censor gay stories. A letter shared by unnamed Pixar employees states that protests about this censorship have gone unheeded. Disney or Pixar have yet to officially react to the allegations. (Also read: Turning Red review: Well-made film on growing up that gets representation right)
The letter was sent in response to a memo sent by Disney CEO Bob Chapek earlier this week. The memo addressed the controversial Florida bill, which has been criticised by many as discriminatory towards the LGBTQ community.
As per a report by Entertainment Weekly, the letter was signed by leadership from the LGBTQIA+ Employees of Pixar & Their Allies. It stated, "We at Pixar have personally witnessed beautiful stories, full of diverse characters, come back from Disney corporate reviews shaved down to crumbs of what they once were." The letter further added how protests from the creative team and even Pixar leadership did not achieve much. "Nearly every moment of overtly gay affection is cut at Disney's behest, regardless of when there is protest from both the creative teams and executive leadership at Pixar," it read further.
Pixar, the studio that has produced landmark films like Toy Story, Up, Finding Nemo, and Soul, among others, was started in 1979. Disney purchased it in 2006 at a valuation of over $7.4 billion. Since then, it has operated as a subsidiary of Disney. In 2020, it released Out, a short film about a gay man finding love. This was the studio's first project centred on an LGBTQ character.
The recently-passed 'Don't Say Gay' bill seeks to prevent discussions of sexual orientation and gender identity "in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards." Critics have argued that this will not just increase stigma around LGBTQ identity but also limit awareness around the community's issues.