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'Beauty And The Beast' pulled from release in Malaysia

UPDATE: Film shelved despite censors approving version that cuts “gay moment”.

Disney has pulled Beauty And The Beast from release in Malaysia, according to The Associated Press.

The film has been shelved even though film censors said on Tuesday (14 March) that it had been approved with a minor cut involving a “gay moment.”

Beauty And The Beast was set for release on Thursday, but Malaysia’s two main cinema chains said the movie has been postponed indefinitely.

Film Censorship Board chairman Abdul Halim Abdul Hamid told The Associated Press: “We have approved it but there is a minor cut involving a gay moment. It is only one short scene but it is inappropriate because many children will be watching this movie.”

He said he did not know why the film, awarded a P13 rating, was postponed.

Yesterday a Disney spokesperson told the Malaysian Star that the film had been put on hold due to an “internal review”.

The news comes after the film was awarded a 16+ rating in Russia, where it was criticised by one politician as so-called homosexual propaganda.

The adult rating followed an interview given by director Bill Condon in which he revealed that Josh Gad’s character LeFou is involved in a “gay moment” in the film.

Malaysia has been criticised for its treatment of LGBT people.

Human Rights Watch said in their 2015 World Report: “Discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people is pervasive in Malaysia.”

Disney were unavailable for comment.

The film is released in the UK on Friday.

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