HENAGAR, Ala./Buffalo, N.Y. (AP modified)— An Alabama drive-in theater won’t show a new re-telling of the classic fairy tale “Beauty and the Beast” because one of its characters is portrayed as homosexual.
A Facebook post for the Henagar Drive-In Theatre says its operators are “first and foremost Christians” and will not compromise on what the Bible teaches. They said they will show family-oriented films so customers can “watch wholesome movies.”
The post said the owners were taking a stand and making a choice not to show the film, which includes manservant Le Fou, who plays the sidekick to the story’s villain Gaston and, according to director Bill Condon, “is confused about his sexuality.”
Theater operators did not immediately respond to emails or phone messages to confirm the Facebook posting.
Transit Drive-in posted the following response to their Facebook on Friday,“We have been watching this story unfold over the past several hours. We were extremely disappointed that a fellow drive-in business owner would go out of their way to publicly diminish a group of people based upon their personal beliefs.We believe that families should make their own choices on which movies are appropriate for their children to see themselves, and not be subjected to the censorship of others. We choose our movie lineups based primarily upon anticipated popularity and earning potential, and never our personal, political, or religious beliefs.Transit Drive-In will be opening on March 17-19, proudly showing Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Be Our Guest.”
The Disney film releases March 17.