Owners of a drive-in theater in Alabama are receiving quite a bit of local attention after publicly declaring that they would not be showing the “Beauty and the Beast” live-action reboot because the film will feature a homosexual side-character.
Henegar Drive-In Theater in DeKalb County, Alabama, will not be showing “Beauty and the Beast,” when it is released, no doubt missing out on quite a bit of revenue for what the owner claims is for religious reasons.
Carol Laney and her husband say that they feel the movie’s inclusion of a homosexual character goes against their religious beliefs, and that because of this, they will not be screening the film at their outdoor theater.
In a message posted on the theater’s Facebook page, the owners say that it is with “great sorrow,” that they inform customers they will not be showing the Disney live-action film.
“We all make choices and I am making mine . . . If we can not talk our 11 year old grand daughter and 8 year old grandson to see a movie we have no business watching it. If I can’t sit through a movie with God or Jesus sitting by me then we have no business showing it.”
The couple says that they hope consumers will respect their choice not to screen the film, but say that their religious faith comes before any business decision.
Apparently, a fictional Disney film about cross-species love and talking candlesticks was okay in the context of their religion, but bring a gay character into the mix and things are not okay.
It should be noted that it does appear that the drive-in movie theater is traditional in more than one way – currently, the two films the theater is showing are g-rated “The Eagle Huntress” and PG-rated “A Dog’s Purpose.” Despite questions of animal cruelty, both of these films do appear to conform to the couple’s religious test. Of course, if you really wanted to make a case for it, “A Dog’s Purpose” does seem to play around with the religious beliefs of Buddhism, using a form of reincarnation as a plot device.
It is the owners’ right to refuse to screen a film, but they will likely see that they miss out on a great deal of revenue for their choice. Once Disney has taken a political stance, debate on the issue is basically over.