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Josh Gad and Disney were applauded for the live-action version of Beauty and the Beast when it was revealed that the character of LeFou was gay, but there was also backlash. Dropping by SiriusXM channel Radio Andy with Andy Cohen on Monday to talk about his new film Frozen 2, Gad also talked about the 2017 retelling starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens.
“Here’s what we decided — we decided that LeFou’s happy ending would be to dance with another man,” the actor said.
The moment, which is in the film, was actually Gad’s idea, he said.
“It was my pitch, that’s how I really wanted the movie to end,” Gad told Cohen. “I was so amazed they let us do it.”
He added, “That became such a controversial thing, apparently, even though it was only three seconds of screen time. We never put a spotlight on it. We never meant to put a spotlight on it. It became a conflated, weird controversy.”
Director Bill Condon “was very proud of the moment” and “the moment speaks for itself,” Gad said. “In light of that fact that so many people were like, ‘Blah, blah, blah,’ there were so many people who stood up and applauded that moment and were so excited about it.”
He added, “I think there is still lots more work to be done in equal representation, and I really hope that Disney keeps finding more ways to do that.”
In 2017, Condon revealed the film would have an “exclusively gay moment.”
“LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston,” Condon told Altitude. “He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings. And Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it. And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie.”
In response to the moment, the conservative group The American Family Association called for a boycott, while an Alabama theater said it would not show the film.
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