Pixar's Buzz Lightyear banned in UAE over same-sex kiss

The new film 'Lightyear' will follow the origin story of the astronaut who inspired the action figure in Toy Story. Credit: Pixar

Disney and Pixar's upcoming animated feature film Lightyear will not be shown in the United Arab Emirates, officials have said.

While UAE's media regulatory office hasn't given a specific reason for axing the film from cinemas, the move does contain a same-sex kiss.

In a social media post, the department said the film had been banned for its "violation of the country's media content standards".

The regulatory body posted an image of the film with a big red cross through it, confirming that the scheduled release on June 16 had been shelved.

The announcement also comes just a few months after the UAE said it would stop censoring films that are released in cinemas.

Across the Middle East, depictions of homosexuality, certain religious messages and sexual content are cut to fall in line with cultural guidance.

Consensual same-sex relationships or activity is still criminalised in the UAE and as such other films featuring gay storylines, such as Elton John biopic Rocketman have also fallen foul of censorship.

The films sex scenes were cut in Russia and distribution of the film was halted outright in Samoa.

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