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‘Lightyear’ banned in 14 markets
Lightyear,” which features a same-sex kiss, has been denied release in more than a dozen mainly Muslim countries.Countries across Asia and the Middle East have refused to give Pixar’s “Toy Story” spinoff a showing, in the latest development for parent company Disney as it tries to navigate differing public and political attitudes on LGBTQ issues.Regulators in the United Arab Emirates this week announced they were banning the movie for “violation of the country’s media content standards,” tweeting a picture of titular hero Buzz Lightyear in a red “No” symbol.Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority country, said it had not banned the film, “but suggested the owner of the movie think about their audience in Indonesia where an LGBT kissing scene is still considered sensitive.”Rommy Fibri Hardiyanto, head of Indonesia’s censoring office overseen by the Ministry of Education and Culture, told AFP that Disney has not offered a re-cut version of “Lightyear.”In neighboring Malaysia, the Film Censorship Board said if cuts were not made the film would not be screened in the country.“It is not appropriate to show the two scenes, and they are not suitable to be viewed by children,” an official, who declined to be named, told AFP.Disney is understood to have declined to make any cuts, offering the film “as is” in all markets.As a result, a total of 14 countries and territories where the company wanted to show “Lightyear” have not granted the film a release, AFP has learned.The others are: Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, the Palestinian Territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Syria.“Lightyear” tells the backstory of the main character from the hit franchise “Toy Story,” an action figure who believes he is
First openly gay Qatari with global profile counters death threats with visibility
World Cup year finally kicks off, even though he will never return to his homeland.As the wealthy Gulf state’s first openly gay man with a global profile his messaging will be far removed from the fanfare likely to sweep the eight stadiums in six months’ time.Dr Nas believes the 32 nations heading to a tournament regarded as the crown jewels of the sporting world will be playing ‘in a house of abused children’ in terms of his homeland’s treatment of LGBTQ+ people.He went public at the end of May, which resulted in death threats and abusive comments on social media, as well as many supportive messages from Qataris, albeit in private.Now working and living in the US, the physician plans to increase the visibility of LGBTQ+ Qataris before and during the FIFA World Cup 2022, which kicks off at the 60,000-capacity Al-Bayt stadium on November 21.His decision to step out of the shadows has come at great personal cost. The 35-year-old accepts he will never return to the land of his birth and is now estranged from his family, with the abusive messages coming after his story was covered by an Arabic-language TV channel.Even in the US, where he runs Osra Medical practice in San Francisco, he believes that ‘the threat of death is not zero’ after the news was ill-received by some in the conservative emirate.‘There was a wave of hate messages,’ Dr Nas says.‘I had at least two death threats on my Instagram, several more on my DMs and everything else short of that.