‘Beauty and the Beast’ Introduces Disney Movies First Ever Openly Gay Character
Josh Gad plays Disney’s first openly gay character in the new, hotly anticipated, live-action version of Beauty and the Beast, and this “nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie” is reportedly a dedication to the animated film’s late lyricist Howard Ashman who was gay and died of AIDS in 1991 before the film’s release.
According to director Bill Condon, the “gay moment” will come during a scene in which the bumbling sidekick to the story’s main antagonist Gaston, played by Luke Evans, explores his sexuality.
“LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston,” Condon told Attitude, a British gay magazine. “He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realising that he has these feelings.”
Gad said on Twitter that he’s “beyond proud” to take on the history-making role.
However not all LGBT fans feel quite so great about it – LaFou is a clownish figure and doesn’t feel like the right person to lead the way for positive LGBT representation in 2017.
It saddens me that Disney has to take this route. Was it really indispensable for the story to do this?
Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” is a live-action re-telling of the studio’s animated classic which refashions the classic characters from the tale as old as time for a contemporary audience, staying true to the original music while updating the score with several new songs. “Beauty and the Beast” is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince within.
The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Oscar® winner Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s eccentric, but lovable father; Josh Gad as Lefou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Golden Globe® nominee Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, the candelabra; Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Oscar nominee Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and two-time Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.
Beauty and the Beast will be released in theaters March 17.