The 2017 remake of the Disney animated classic Beauty And The Beast, starring Emma Watson, was given a PG (Parental Guidance) rating by the authorities here for "mild portrayals of violence"and not for the gay moment that churches here have alerted their congregations to.
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), in response to queries by The Straits Times on whether a gay moment in the film, which opens tomorrow was taken into account when giving the rating, said: "IMDA's film classification approach gives audiences access to a wider range of media choices while protecting our young from unsuitable content.
"Central to IMDA's classification framework is the use of age-ratings and advisories to help consumers make informed media choices."
It added that this was also the rating assessment of the Films Consultative Panel, which comprises volunteers from various professions, ages, races and religions.
Meanwhile, the National Council of Churches of Singapore (NCCS) issued a letter to churches yesterday urging pastors to "alert" their congregation about the homosexual content in the film.
The letter, posted on the council's website, read: "Some Christian leaders here... see this as an attempt to influence young children and socialise them at an early age into thinking that the homosexual lifestyle is normal."
The Catholic Church also responded to the film's content.
Mr Andre Ahchak, spokesman for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Singapore, said: "With extensive media reports of the purported 'gay moment' in this movie, we believe that parents must discern and reflect with their children on whether the lifestyle portrayed is consonant with the teaching of Christ."
Meanwhile, at least one theatre in the United States is not screening the film. The release of the film in Malaysia has also been shelved, despite regulators there approving it after censoring the gay moment.
Director Bill Condon, who is gay, said in an interview that a male character, LeFou, is "confused" about his sexuality.