Pixar producer explains why Lightyear’s ‘touching’ same-sex kiss is so important
A Pixar producer has explained the importance of a “touching” same-sex kiss in Lightyear being restored after it was initially cut from the film.
According to Variety, the origin story of Toy Story‘s Buzz Lightyear features Pixar’s first onscreen lesbian kiss, which was reportedly cut from the film. Following an uproar surrounding Disney’s handling of Florida’s infamous “Don’t Say Gay” bill, the kiss was reinstated into the film in March.
As part of a press screening for the film, Pixar producer Galyn Susman confirmed that while the relationship between Buzz Lightyear’s best friend Hawthorne (voiced by Uzo Aduba) and her wife was always included, a kiss between the two had been cut out.
She said: “Yes. We have a kiss. You saw it in the version of the film that you all saw before this Q&A. We’ve always had the lesbian couple. They’ve always been a part of the film. Being able to put back the kiss was important to us.
“It’s a touching moment. It helps Buzz to see what it is that he’s… It’s the life that’s being lived in front of him by his best friend that he’s not having. He doesn’t have those kinds of relationships. He doesn’t have a child. He doesn’t have what she has. And so it was important for us to get that back in there. And we’re really excited about that.”
Angus MacLane, the film’s director, added in an interview with Looper: “We wanted the characters to be essential to the movie and not be a superfluous thing. If anything, baking that into the story was something that was necessary and also really functional for us.”
You know his name, now discover his story.
— Disney and Pixar's Lightyear (@PixarsLightyear) April 21, 2022
Disney, Pixar’s parent company, received backlash from employees and the LGBT+ community alike after it was revealed that the company donated money to several politicians who sponsored Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Despite Disney CEO Bob Chapek issuing an apology and pausing all political donations in Florida, Disney staff staged a walkout in March in protest, calling for the entertainment giant to improve LGBT+ representation in its movies and reaffirm its commitment to protecting queer staff.
After the bill was put into law, Disney condemned it in a statement on Twitter, saying it “never should have passed”. The company added it was now working with both national and state organisations to fight the legislation.
“Our goal as a company is for this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts, and we remain committed to supporting the national and state organisations working to achieve that,” Disney wrote.
“We are dedicated to standing up for the rights and safety of LGBTQ+ members of the Disney family, as well as the LGBTQ+ community in Florida and across the country.”