COLUMN: Disney’s TV and Live-Action Film Divisions Put the Company in An Impossible Position
As everybody knows by now, the Disney-ABC Television Group has become unglued in terms of liberal activism. Not only is ABC News (as well as its competitors in the liberal press) grilling anybody and everybody who is conservative or Christian, the network’s prime time lineup is advocating for every far-left cause possible. This kind of activism is also infecting their cable operations including ESPN, Freeform and even the Disney XD kids’ channel. According to a report by Heat Street’s Jillian Kay Melchoir, a recent episode of the Disney XD cartoon Star vs. the Forces of Evil featured a scene displaying several same-sex couples kissing each other during a boy band concert.
The Star vs. the Forces of Evil episode featured a scene at a boy band concert, where several people, including gay and lesbian couples, kiss to the music. The gender of various other lip-locked couples shown is unclear.
It was rather inappropriate for a kids’ channel to broadcast something like that, and nobody should be learning about anything LGBT until they are at least 13 years old, at least in my opinion. The scene was put out by two people who should have known better. Disney Television Animation employee Daron Nefcy is the person who developed Star. As the show’s original creator, she has absolute control over what goes on in her story. And Dave Wasson, a former Nickelodeon employee, has a hand in the show as well. This instance is yet another perfect example of the pattern of behavior sanctioned by Disney-ABC Television Group chief Ben Sherwood (who also serves on the board of the Center for Public Integrity, run by leftist billionaire George Soros) and Disney Channels Worldwide boss Gary Marsh. They should be ashamed of themselves, but they are anything but.
However, Disney’s television division isn’t the only one engaging in far-left activism – and in the process, giving the entire company a bad name – even the live-action film division is being infected by the disease that is progressivism. The new remake of the 1991 Disney animated film Beauty and the Beast directed by far-left bomb thrower Bill Condon – who also did the last two Twilight movies – has recently made established villains Gaston and La Fou a gay couple, potentially alienating anybody who might have grown up watching the original cartoon from seeing the upcoming remake. In an interview with The Daily Telegraph newspaper in Britain, Condon put it this way:
LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston, [a]nd Josh [Gad, who plays LeFou] makes something really subtle and delicious out of it.
Unbelievable. Now a lot of the people involved in the Beauty and the Beast remake – including Josh Gad (as well as John Legend and Ariana Grande, who do a cover version of the title song) – have been known for bashing conservatives or Americans in general for some time, especially on Twitter. They are radical progressives who blame America first, and the filmmakers even re-tooled the story to cater to the identity politics that caused Hillary Clinton to lose her bid for the White House last year. And that tells you all you need to know about the remake of Beauty and the Beast.
Summing up, it will be interesting to see how owners of Disney stock react to the kind of activism that the company’s television division and live-action film studio have both decided to engage in during the upcoming shareholders’ meeting in Colorado. In the case of the television arm in particular, there will probably be near-revolt. That’s not a surprise, as the main culprit of this mess is not just Disney XD, but also the ABC network with stuff like the failing sitcom The Real O’Neals and the leftist miniseries When We Rise, which recently concluded and saw low ratings. It could also be possible that Beauty and the Beast might not do as good as Disney is predicting when it comes out, especially as a result of the re-tooling of the Gaston and La Fou characters; that hopefully won’t be the case.
There is no excuse for either the TV arm or the live-action film studio to taint the reputation of their parent company like this. Pixar co-founder and chief creative officer John Lasseter – who also oversees Walt Disney Animation Studios – only focuses on entertaining family audiences with his work, and is a man who actually respects the company’s history through the work he does. Most of all, nobody knows his political leanings, and you can tell that from his work. The people responsible for the two projects that did what they did should learn from him. Stay out of politics and social issues, and focus on entertaining your audience.