On March 9, Disney employees sent a public letter to the Walt Disney Company executives, claiming an "overtly gay" affection was censored in one of its feature films. This allegation comes as employees protest Florida's anti-groomer law and oppose the "apathy" of Disney CEO Bob Chapek regarding it.
According to a Variety Exclusive, the film in question is Lightyear, a spinoff Toy Story film centring around Buzz Lightyear. A female character, Hawthorne (voiced by Uzo Aduba), is shown to be in a relationship with another woman and a kissing scene is meant to be in the film. However, the characters were cut from the movie.
Following the uproar around the anti-groomer law, the studio has put the scene back in the movie. The memo sent to the studio on March 7 read: "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."
"Even if creating LGBTQIA+ content was the answer to fixing the discriminatory legislation in the world, we are being barred from creating it."
In addition to this scene being restored, protestors still demand that Chapek detail a plan in public that "protects employees from hateful legislation" and to not construct in or invest any money in the state of Florida "until hateful legislation is repealed."
On March 9, Chapek publicly spoke out against the new law and went as far as to request a meeting with Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) on the subject.
Recently, a massive-scale sting operation in the area has netted 108 arrests for soliciting prostitution, in many cases with minors. Four of those caught, arrested and charged in the sting are employees of Disney.