As Disney apparently continues to advance what some critics deride as its "not-at-all-secret gay agenda," the company's next animated feature film, "Strange World," will reportedly include its first openly gay teenage romance.
Matthieu Saghezchi, a production designer for animation, tweeted about screening a snippet of the new film, which was recently shown at the Annecy 2022 International Animation Film Festival in southeast France.
"Just saw the very first glimpse into #Disney’s #StrangeWorld at the #Annecy2022 festival – it features the first openly gay teen romance in a disney feature!!! ... #RepresentationMatters," Saghezchi wrote.
"The scene describes the son being very shy in front of his boy crush, and his dad comes in and says 'so nice to meet you! my son talks about you all the time' and further embarrasses his son ... very cute," he added.
According to WDW News Today, Jaboukie Young-White will voice the teenage Ethan, who flirted with a boy named Diazo in one of the three sequences shown at the festival.
Also starring in the film will be: Dennis Quaid as Ethan’s grandfather Jaeger Clade, Jake Gyllenhaal as his son Searcher and Gabrielle Union as Ethan’s mom and Searcher’s wife Meridian. Lucy Liu will be Callisto Mal, who is the head of the film’s magical setting of Avalonea.
Diazo was not announced among the main characters, WDW News Today reported, noting that a romance between him and Ethan is likely not a main plot of the film.
Scheduled to open Nov. 23, the film will follow three generations of a family of explorers and take viewers "to a place of infinite mystery unlike anything you’ve ever seen," according to a trailer released by the studio earlier this month.
The news about "Strange World" follows the release earlier this month of the Disney/Pixar feature film "Lightyear," which included a same-sex kiss between two female animated characters. It has reportedly been banned in 14 countries.
The United Arab Emirates announced last week that the film would not be shown in the country "due to its violation of the country's media standards."
Disney has come under fire from conservatives in recent months for its "woke" corporate leanings and its penchant for inserting LGBTQ content into its products.
During a recent company meeting about addressing Florida's newly adopted Parental Rights in Education Act, Disney Executive Producer Latoya Raveneau claimed to be regularly "adding queerness" to the company's children's programming.
"Our leadership over there has been so welcoming to my not-at-all-secret gay agenda," Raveneau said. "I don't have to be afraid to have these two characters kiss. Wherever I could, just basically adding queerness. No one would stop me, and no one was trying to stop me."
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