Nimona Was Too Gay for Disney. Netflix Adopted It.

Photo: Netflix

The Try Guys have tried so, so many things in their quest for views. They’ve tried simulating the pain of childbirth. They’ve tried the concept of Australia. They’ve even tried to be funny. But have any of them ever tried to voice an animated character named Ambrosius Goldenloin? No …

… Until now. Netflix announced it will release the animated feature Nimona in 2023. Based on the graphic novel by ND Stevenson, Nimona was in development at Blue Sky Studios for years until Disney shut down the animation studio in 2021. After acquiring Blue Sky’s parent company, Fox, in 2019, Disney leadership pressured the production to omit a same-sex kiss from the film, according to a Business Insider piece from March. “When the biggest entertainment company in the world creates content for children and systematically censors queer content, they are pushing queer children to dark places,” a former staffer told BI.

Now Netflix is releasing the film, which takes place “in a techno-medieval world unlike anything animation has tackled before” and follows a knight named Ballister Boldheart (Riz Ahmed) who forms an uneasy bond with Nimona (Chloë Grace Moretz), “a shape-shifting teen who might also be a monster he’s sworn to kill.” The kiss, assuming it’s restored to the film, is where Try Guy Eugene Lee Yang will come in, as the knight’s romantic interest, Ambrosius Goldenloin. And it certainly seems, based on Netflix’s synopsis, that the streamer is leaning into the queer themes, calling the film “a story about the labels we assign to people and the shapeshifter who refuses to be defined by anyone.” In light of Disney’s funding of the legislators behind the recently passed “Don’t Say Gay” law, Netflix knows exactly what it’s doing with this announcement. Better put its money where its mouth is and put Ballister Boldheart’s lips where Ambrosius Goldenloin’s mouth is.

Nimona Was Too Gay for Disney. Netflix Adopted It.