Netflix Ordered to Pull Film About Gay Jesus

Brazilian judge says 'freedom of expression ... is not absolute'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 9, 2020 9:55 AM CST
Netflix Ordered to Pull Film About Gay Jesus
Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos, Calif., pictured on Jan. 29, 2010.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

A Brazilian judge has ordered Netflix to remove a film depicting Jesus Christ with a boyfriend. The First Temptation of Christ, released as a Christmas special, caused such fury among Brazil's conservative Christians that 2 million signed a petition calling for its removal, while a group lobbed firebombs at the office of the film's creators on Christmas Eve, per the BBC. The final decision on the film from YouTube comedy group Porta dos Fundos rests with a higher court. But Rio de Janeiro Judge Benedicto Abicair made his feelings known Wednesday in issuing a temporary ban, which reversed a lower court ruling.

The film's removal "is beneficial not only to the Christian community, but to Brazilian society, which is mostly Christian," Abicair wrote, per the AP. "The right to freedom of expression ... is not absolute" and "exhibiting the 'artistic production' ... may cause graver and more irreparable damage than its suspension," he added, per the BBC. The ruling came after President Jair Bolsonaro's son, Eduardo Bolsonaro, berated the film as "garbage" in a tweet. The members of Porta dos Fundos "do not represent Brazilian society," he wrote. His father once said he would rather have a dead son than a gay one. Both Porta dos Fundos and Netflix declined to comment. (Read more Netflix stories.)

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