Beauty and the Beast could make major strides in representation when it hits theaters in a few weeks, with one of the first known LGBTQ characters in a Disney princess film.
In an exclusive with Attitude magazine, director Bill Condon revealed that Le Fou (Josh Gad) is coming to terms with his sexuality and that the internal struggle has a payoff.
“LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston,” Condon said in the interview.
“He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings,” he added. “And Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it. And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie.”
In an immediate response, Mic analyzed the potential pitfalls of Le Fou shouldering the burden of gay representation in this film (he’s very much a sidekick and a source of comic relief).
Some fans have long speculated that many other Disney characters, including Frozen’s Elsa (a theory Idina Menzel supports) and Brave’s Merida, may be gay, but making Le Fou’s sexuality apparently explicit will set the film apart.
Beauty and the Beast is in theaters March 17.