'Beauty and the Beast' movie: Controversy brews over gay character

'Beauty and the Beast' movie: Controversy brews over gay character

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'Beauty and the Beast' movie: Controversy brews over gay character

A character in the live-action movie remake of “Beauty and the Beast” is gay.

This was confirmed by the film’s director, Bill Condon, who told “Attitude” magazine there will be an “exclusively gay moment” in the film.

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 02: Actor Josh Gad arrives for the world premiere of Disney's live-action "Beauty and the Beast" at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood as the cast and filmmakers continue their worldwide publicity tour on March 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney)

Actor Josh Gad arrives for the world premiere of Disney’s live-action “Beauty and the Beast.” Credit: Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney

Actor Josh Gad, who plays LeFou, said the script didn’t specifically mention the character is gay. He strove to make the cartoony character human.

“What was most important to me was taking a character that is wonderful and so iconic, but is defined by cartoon conceits in the (original) movie … and expanding on that, giving him dimension, making him human,” Gad told “USA TODAY ” on the red carpet during the Thursday screening.

Some parents, looking forward to the remake of their favorite animated Disney movie, aren’t happy. At least one movie theater in the South has refused to show the film.

Charlotte, N.C., evangelist Franklin Graham called for a movie boycott because it pushed “the LGBT agenda.”

azcentral.com movie critic Bill Goodykoontz has called on movie-goers to ignore the controversy and instead see “Beauty and the Beast” for themselves. He calls it “happy, joyous, a real treat.”

The movie, starring Emma Watson, premieres nationwide Friday, March 17. Early tracking doesn’t indicate the movie will suffer financially from the controversy.

It’s expected to have a $120 million-plus opening, according to “The Hollywood Reporter.” To give you some perspective, the current March record holder is last year’s “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” with $166.1 million. In 2012, “The Hunger Games” brought in $152.5 million.

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