Pepe Le Pew ‘Rape’ Scene Cut from Space Jam 2
The Looney Tunes character Pepe Le Pew has been cut from the new “Space Jam” animated feature after New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow noted in a tweet that the cartoon French skunk “added to rape culture.”
Blow wrote: “RW blogs are mad bc I said Pepe Le Pew added to rape culture. Let’s see. 1. He grabs/kisses a girl/stranger, repeatedly, w/o consent and against her will. 2. She struggles mightily to get away from him, but he won’t release her 3. He locks a door to prevent her from escaping.” It’s true … Penelope Pussycat was often in Pepe’s clutches.
Here’s more from TMZ:
Apparently, there was a ‘Casablanca’-like scene in which Pepe played a bartender and tried kissing the arm of a human character, portrayed by actress Greice Santo. Santo pulls back and slapped Pepe silly … and LeBron James actually gave him a pep talk of sorts, letting him know it wasn’t cool to get grabby without consent. The scene was axed in the final cut of the film — which is set to debut this summer.
Officially titled “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” and produced by James and “Black Panther’s” Ryan Coogler, this new tale features a slew of NBA players including James, Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Chris Paul and Damian Lillard.
When the film was first announced in 2018, James opened up to The Hollywood Reporter about filling in the role once held by Michael Jordan.
“The Space Jam collaboration is so much more than just me and the Looney Tunes getting together and doing this movie,” he told the outlet. “It’s so much bigger. I’d just love for kids to understand how empowered they can feel and how empowered they can be if they don’t just give up on their dreams.”
Back in August, James shared the first look at the new uniforms for the film, writing “Tune Squad coming soon!! 👀🔥🐰 Glad all my @ljfamfoundation and @ipromiseschool families got to see it first. 🙏🏾 Thanks for holdin it down my brother @mavcarter 🤜🏾🤛🏾,” James wrote on Instagram at the time, shouting out his business partner Maverick Carter.
In December, Microsoft teamed with Warner Bros. for a coding-education campaign tied to the 2021 release of the movie.
The campaign called on fans to submit ideas for an original Xbox arcade-style video game. Two winners will have their creations turned into arcade-style games that will be available for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members in 2021, per geekwire.com.