UPDATE: See end of article for additional info
Disney has announced that it will be producing its first animated feature film with two openly gay lead characters who will fall in love and, by the end of the film, even find happiness in a fairytale, same-sex wedding. The film, titled Princes, will be released to theaters in the fall of 2015.
The entertainment giant has had a long history of supporting LGBT initiatives. In the late 90′s the company was among the first to extend healthcare benefits to partners of homosexual employees and Gay pride events have been hosted at Disney World since 1991. Many have also speculated that other Disney movies have been Pro-Gay, albeit in a more subtle way. Disney’s blockbuster hit, Frozen, was riddled with pro-gay subtext. Elsa hiding her ice-powers can easily be interpreted as a metaphor for the closet and the Oscar-winning “Let it Go” sounds exactly like a coming-out anthem. However, Princes will certainly mark the first time that the company will produce an animated children’s film starring openly gay main characters.
Princes is an adaptation of the children’s book, “The Princes and the Treasure”, by Jeffrey A Miles. In the book, two handsome princes, Earnest and Gallant, set off to rescue a princess, but fall in love with each other instead. The fairytale story ends with the two princes getting married and living happily ever after. The book has recently been released internationally after initially being available in the United States in February of 2014
“I suddenly wondered, why aren’t there any gay princes or lesbian princesses?,” Miles told LGBT website Advocate.
“Why can’t the handsome prince marry another handsome prince? Why can’t a damsel in distress be rescued by a beautiful princess?” Both gay and straight couples alike adore the story owing to its universal appeal. But the book has also struck a chord with the kids, who love the story like any other famous fairy tales. “Kids see that the story is about two people who fall in love and get married. All of the kids who have read the story don’t find it unusual that the two characters who get married happen to be two men. Kids seem to see that love can happen between two people regardless of the couple’s gender.”
Emile Montgomery, a spokesperson for Disney, says that the story has universal appeal with both younger and older audiences across most of the company’s target demographics. “Children will love this movie,” he said. “It shows that love and family are universal, regardless of gender. The Modern American Family is diverse and most US states have gay marriage and it is time that our films embraced these new realities. Hopefully we can help to educate the next generation about diversity, lessening or eliminating homophobia in the future.”
However, not everyone is entirely thrilled with the direction that Disney is going. Deborah Aker-Knapp, an outspoken member of Christians For Traditional Marriage, has said that the movie would be an affront to Christians everywhere and likened the release of the movie to one of the signs of the apocalypse. “What is next?”, she asked, “Should we teach our children that bestiality is ok too? Where will this end? how much longer will this behavior be tolerated by God?”
Montgomery dismissed the objections of Christian conservative groups stating that the film was wholesome family entertainment, but he noted that Disney has already tackled themes of interspecies love in previous films like The Princess And The Frog, Beauty And The Beast, and The Little Mermaid. “Those films were pretty well received.”
“This is story about love, not sex,” he added, “We’ll leave the obsession with genitalia, and what people choose to do with them, to the conservative groups.”
If you are reading this far, you must know by now that this article is not real news, but it should be. I made this post after reading an infuriating comment on an article about ‘The Princes and the Treasure’ on the Christian Post, ‘Public Libraries Stock Gay Fairy Tale Book That Teaches Children Gay Marriage Is OK’ | Christian Post. Here it is from page 2 of the comments:
Every 8th grader knows the simple facts of biology that demonstrate that homosexuality is a sexual disorder. Human sexuality is complementary (male/female) in nature and coitus is the primary function of the male/female genitalia. Homosexuals permanently substitute other sexual practices for coitus in the same way a bulimic permanently substitutes disordered eating practices for healthy eating practices. It is obvious.
The comment made me angry… After reading the comment and others like it on the site, I wrote this article. I wrote it to push the issue of equality a little and also, I admit, to troll some of the haters out there. I am not certain that this helped at all, but I do hope that some of the enthusiasm shown for this post will cause some hollywood notice.