Bruno Gets Backlash From the Gay Community

By: Celebuzz / June 18, 2009

An outcry against Bruno from the Hollywood gay community has caused filmmakers to do “significant reshoots” of the more controversial scenes in an effort to reduce the backlash caused by Sacha Baron Cohen’s newest satire, movie gossip site The Wrap reports.

What the movie satirizes is a point of dispute. While Universal Pictures stands by its claim that the overall message is against homophobia and that the “overwhelming majority of the audience” will realize this, many in the gay community fear that this will be lost on the heterosexual masses.

Peter Paige from Queer As Folk has his doubts. “When you see a Bruno clip in a room full of gay men, everyone laughs and it’s fine. When you see a Bruno clip in a room full of straight men, they’re all laughing, and it’s a different thing. You start to go, ‘Hmmm, I don’t know how I feel about this.'”

As part of its outreach to the gay commnity, Universal Pictures has held several private screenings for gay and lesbian audiences to solicit advice on how to revise the film.  This is a typical practice in the film industry when it comes to movies about homosexuals, but with Bruno it was not done until the final stages of its post-production, rendering most of their suggestions impossible to implement.

It’s uncertain which scenes were re-shot for the final cut of the movie, as Universal has declined to comment on the reshoots.

Incensed, Rashad Robinson, Senior Director of Media Programs for GLAAD said, “Traditionally we would not have been brought into a movie if they were not going to hear our concerns or make some changes—otherwise they’d just put out the movie.”

Them’s fightin’ words. Better get used to it though because the controversy over Bruno has only just begun.

Tell us what you think in the comments section: Has Bruno gone too far?