United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi have banned the highly anticipated animated movie Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.
The movie was supposed to be released in cinemas in the Middle East on June 22 on the occasion of the Eid Al Adha holidays. It is a sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse which was released in 2018.
According to the report by Esquire Middle East, Vox Cinemas, the movie has been banned after failing to pass the censorship requirements.
According to Saudi Cinema, which is run by the General Commission for Audiovisual Media, Spider-Man will not be released in some parts of the Gulf region as it ‘contradicts the content controls in force’, reports Unilad.
While the reason for the ban is unknown, many speculate that it has to do with the brief appearance of the pro-trans flag, with many fans speculating that Gwen’s character is transgender.
The film depicts Gwen Stacy’s teenage experiences in her own universe and her conflicts with her father about who she is, in one scene a trans flag hanging on the wall of Gwen’s room reads “Protect Trans Kids”
This is not the first time that the Middle East has banned a movie because it has an LGBTQ+ theme.