Asia

The Rise of Skywalker: Disney cuts Star Wars same-sex kiss in Singapore

Daisy Ridley in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Image copyright Lucasfilm
Image caption Rey, played by Daisy Ridley, is not one of the characters in the scene

Disney has cut a brief scene of two women kissing in the Singaporean version of its latest Star Wars film.

The Rise of Skywalker features the first same-sex kiss in the franchise's history - described by reviewers as "a brief flash of two women kissing... among a crowd of characters".

But the version released in Singapore omits the scene.

Singapore's media regulatory body told the BBC that Disney cut the scene so it didn't get a higher age rating.

"The applicant has omitted a brief scene which under the film classification guidelines would require a higher rating," said a spokesperson from IMDA.

Without the kiss, the film is rated PG13 in Singapore.

It is not clear if Disney - the owners of Lucasfilm, the Star Wars production company - cut the scene in other countries. It was reportedly shown in China but not in the UAE.

Disney has not responded to the BBC's requests for comment.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A supporter attends the annual "Pink Dot" event in a public show of support for the LGBT community in Singapore

Films in Singapore are typically classed under six different ratings:

  • G (General)
  • PG (Parental Guidance)
  • PG13 (Parental Guidance 13)
  • NC16 (No children under 16)
  • M18 (Restricted to those above 18) and
  • R21 (Restricted to those above 21)

It is not clear what rating the film would have had if the same-sex scene was included. A previous gay teen rom-com, Love Simon, was rated R21 by the IMDA.

In comparison, Love Simon is rated PG13 on movie listing site IMDB.

Brokeback Mountain, which featured two gay cowboys, was aired in Singapore in its entirety in 2006 - but was similarly hit with an R21 listing.

Same-sex marriages are not recognised in Singapore and gay sex is illegal - though the law is not enforced.

There are gay bars and clubs in Singapore, as well as an annual pride rally.

In 2018, a gay Singaporean man won a landmark case allowing him to adopt a child he fathered through a surrogate.

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