Disney has removed a same-sex kiss from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker for its release in Singapore to avoid a higher age rating in the country.
The moment – the first ever LGBTQ+ representation of its kind in a Star Wars film – occurs very briefly towards the end of the film, but fans in Singapore won’t get to see it at all.
IMDA, Singapore's media regulatory body, told the BBC that Disney cut the scene to attain a PG13 rating.
"The applicant has omitted a brief scene which under the film classification guidelines would require a higher rating," a spokesperson said.
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If the same-sex kiss had remained, the film might have received a NC16 rating (or higher) which would have prevented any children under the age of 16 from seeing the concluding chapter in the Skywalker saga.
Same-sex marriages are not recognised in Singapore and gay sex is illegal, although the law is not enforced. The country has gay bars and clubs and an annual pride rally.
The film’s director JJ Abrams teased the moment earlier this month telling Variety: “In the case of the LGBTQ community, it was important to me that people who go to see this movie feel that they’re being represented in the film.”
The moment has also reportedly been cut from the film in parts of the Middle East too. The Hollywood Reporter says that the scene has been cut from the film for cinemas in Dubai too.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is in cinemas now.