The 89er Theater in Kingfisher, Oklahoma has come under fire after it issued a warning about a brief gay kiss featured in Pixar’s ‘Lightyear’. A sign was posted on the theater window during the film’s opening weekend, warning viewers about the gay kiss and saying the theater would “do everything possible to move forward quickly” in the scene. Kingfisher is located approximately 50 miles from Oklahoma City.
As reported by NBC News, the warning message included the following message: “Attention Parents: The management of this theater discovered after booking ‘Lightyear’ that there was a gay kissing scene in the first 30 minutes of the Pixar movie. We’ll do our best to fast-forward this scene, but it may not be accurate.
NBC’s Oklahoma City affiliate KFOR reported the sign was posted over the weekend and was taken down Monday afternoon. Local resident Patricia Kasbek told NBC News she initially thought the warning was a joke. Kasbek later filed a complaint with the theater after discovering the warning was real.
“I told them it was completely insulting for them to censor a same-sex kiss when they’ve never done that to an opposite-sex kiss,” Kasbek said, calling the sign “cruel” and of “sectarian”. “I will never see a movie in this theater under this ownership.”
Alex Wade, deputy director of the LGBTQ advocacy organization Oklahomans for Equality, also criticized the theater in a statement to NBC News, saying, “I’m not shocked to see something like this happening in my state, but it breaks my heart that young LGBTQ+ Oklahomans feel like something is wrong with them. That’s why we are developing chapters in rural Oklahoma to show everyone that there are people in their area.
“When same-sex couples show affection, even the most chaste kisses, they are sexualized and treated as if they are explicit,” Wade added. “If it was a heterosexual couple, the theater wouldn’t even think to skip it, because heterosexual couples have the grace to be intimate without shame.”
“Lightyear” was a box office disappointment on its debut, grossing just $51 million. For Pixar, “Lightyear” ranks among the studio’s lowest, behind 2017’s “Cars 3” ($53 million) and ahead of 2015’s “The Good Dinosaur” ($39 million) and 2020’s “Onward” ( $39 million). It’s also one of the few Pixar films that didn’t take the top spot at the domestic box office, landing in second place.