LGBTQIA+ Pixar Employees Say Disney Censors Same-Sex Love

by Emell Adolphus

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Thursday March 10, 2022

With Disney's response to Florida's "Don't Say Gay" bill under criticism, more employees of the entertainment giant our speaking out about the company's treatment of LGBTQ representation, reported Variety.

In a wide-ranging statement attributed to "the LGBTQIA+ employees of Pixar, and their allies," employees allege that Disney execs have a habit of demanding cuts from "nearly every moment of overtly gay affection ... regardless of when there is protest from both the creative teams and executive leadership at Pixar."

The claim diametrically opposes Disney CEO Bob Chapek's statement that the company execs "unequivocally stand in support of our LGBTQ+ employees, their families, and their communities."

The company's continued donations to the anti-gay politicians behind the bill also shows a further disconnect between its outward statements of support for LGBTQ families from its spending actions.

LGBTQIA+ Pixar employees also shared that they have "personally witnessed beautiful stories, full of diverse characters," shaved "down to crumbs" after reviews from corporate execs.

"Even if creating LGBTQIA+ content was the answer to fixing the discriminatory legislation in the world, we are being barred from creating it," the statement reads.

Specter, a character voiced by out writer and filmmaker Lena Waithe in the film "Onward' is one of only a handful of LGBTQ characters in Pixars that have been allowed to be out on screen. The movie was banned in Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia as a result.

With his statement about the company's response to "Don't Say Gay," CEO Chapek also announced that he would personally meet with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to discuss concerns over the impending legislation. He also said the company would pledge $5 million to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and other LGBTQ rights organizations. However, HRC recently responded expressing that they prefer real change and action over money.

"HRC encourages Disney, and all employers, to continue to fight for their employees — many of whom bravely spoke out to say their CEO's silence was unacceptable — and the LGBTQ+ community by working with us and state and local LGBTQ+ groups to ensure these dangerous anti-equality proposals that harm LGBTQ+ families and kids have no place in Florida," said HRC's interim president Joni Madison in a statement. "Every student deserves to be seen, and every student deserves an education that prepares them for health and success — regardless of who they are. This should be the beginning of Disney's advocacy efforts rather than the end."

LGBTQIA+ Employees of Pixar & Their Allies agree, writing in their statement: "Disney taking a stand by honoring their company values has changed the course of legislation in the past. If Disney is true in its values, it will take a decisive public stand against the discriminatory legislation occurring in Florida and offer tangible support for the LGBTQIA+ communities affected by bigoted legislation sweeping the country."

Read the full statement at Variety.