Disney’s new live action adaptation of the popular animated film Beauty and the Beast is making history by featuring Disney’s first gay character, LeFou.
Played by Josh Gad (who is perhaps best known for voicing Olaf in Frozen), LeFou is the close companion and manservant of egotistical skirt-chaser Gaston. The film will feature its first gay scene in which LeFou explores his sexuality and his feelings for Gaston.
According to director Bill Condon, LeFou is someone who, one day, wants to be Gaston and the next, wants to romantically be with Gaston. This “watershed moment” is a huge stepping stone for Disney, and the film itself attempts to show more progressive perspectives on beloved Beauty and the Beast characters. In addition to the change in LeFou’s sexuality, Belle is more decidedly feminist in her revisions. Belle has aspirations of becoming an inventor like her father, making her no mere bookworm.
These advancements come after last year’s criticism Disney received from GLAAD for not featuring any major LGBTQIA characters in their films. It seems that Disney has chosen to not play it safe with its live action adaptation of fan favorite Beauty and the Beast. But how will fans react?
Judging by fans’ responses online, it seems that most fans have been eagerly awaiting the feature of a gay character in a Disney film for quite some time. While it seems some are already upset by Disney’s decision, many fans are eager to see this depiction of LeFou on screen when the film hits theaters on March 17, 2017.