Universal Pulls 'Homophobic' Halloween Act
Universal Studios has cancelled a Halloween show at its Hollywood theme park following complaints of homophobia over a scene in which Superman turns gay.
The offending segment was based on the film franchise Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure and formed part of the hugely successful Halloween Horror Night show which runs annually at the theme park.
Confirming the cancellation, the company wrote on its website: "After thoughtful consideration, Universal Studios Hollywood has made the decision to discontinue production of the Halloween Horror Nights' Bill & Ted show for the remainder of its limited run."
Universal also removed a clip of the show which featured the gay Superman character from YouTube.
The cancelled scene showed Superman being sprinkled with fairy dust then becomingly increasingly camp and engaging in what gay right group GLAAD described as "a series of gay stereotypes for the audience to laugh at".
It is also reported to have contained rape jokes and racist stereotypes.
Prior to its cancellation, Universal Studios had attempted to ease concerns by releasing a statement saying the show was "specifically intended to be shocking and satirical in tone, focusing on adult themes".
A spokesperson for the company added: "The show lampoons across all areas of our culture and it was not our intention to offend or upset anyone. We know there are a range of opinions on this issue and we will respect them as we consistently review and refine the show's content."
GLAAD spokesman Wilson Cruz welcomed the decision to cancel the scene, which had been running only on select nights, and was preceded by a warning that it included adult humour.
He said: "NBCUniversal has taken quick and strong action regarding this matter and also started a productive dialogue around future 'Bill & Ted' programming to ensure that all park visitors can have an enjoyable experience.
"This decision falls in line with NBCUniversal's history of including ground-breaking and positive depictions of LGBT people across its brands."
Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure was a 1989 film starring Keanu Reeves and Bill Preston. It was followed by Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey in 1991, with a third film reportedly in development.