Luke Evans portrays alpha male Gaston in Disney’s live-action “Beauty and the Beast,” but in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter he refutes a long-interpreted gay subtext between the villain and his right-hand man LeFou, played in the film by Josh Gad.
“There’s a lot of authenticity there, they’re like best buddies, they’ve been in each other’s lives for a very long time,” he said. “I remember when I was a young kid and I always looked up to my older friends and thought, ‘Ah. One day I want to be like them. I want to play rugby like them. Everybody thinks they’re the best, I want to be that person.’ I think LeFou looks up to Gaston in that way — as a hero. I certainly don’t think there was anything more outside that relationship. They’re just good friends. What’s lovely about LeFou’s character is he finds his soul and his identity throughout the movie just as everybody else does.”
Director Bill Condon definitely read the relationship differently, telling Attitude, “LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston. He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings.”
There has been plenty of controversy surrounding what Condon referred to as an “exclusively gay moment” for LeFou, which stirred up a frenzy with intolerant politicians and theatre owners. The film was banned at an Alabama theatre, a steep age restriction was placed in Russia, and Disney pulled the film entirely from Malaysia.
Check out Gaston and LeFou in the “Beauty and the Beast” trailer below: