According to The Hollywood Reporter, the decision was made after Disney refused to make edits requested by the local censors.
Sources suggest that the edits in question concerned a scene in which Phastos (played by Brian Tyree Henry) and his on-screen husband Ben (portrayed by Haaz Sleiman) share a kiss. Homosexuality is still officially illegal across the Gulf region.
Jolie – who stars in the MCU film as Thena – has said she is “sad for [those audiences]” and that she is “proud of Marvel for refusing to cut those scenes out”.
The 46-year-old told Australian news outlet news.com.au: “I still don’t understand how we live in a world today where there’s still [people who] would not see the family Phastos has and the beauty of that relationship and that love.
“How anybody is angry about it, threatened by it, doesn’t approve or appreciate it is ignorant.”
Earlier this year, the film’s director, Chloé Zhao, spoke about her desire to not edit any scenes to appease censors.
The Oscar-winning filmmaker told Indiewire: “I don’t know all the details, but I do believe discussions were had and there’s a big desire for Marvel and myself – we talked about this – to not change the cut of the movie. Fingers crossed.”
Last year, the animated Pixar film Onward was banned across Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia over a single line of dialogue referencing a lesbian relationship between two of its characters.
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