Touching Petition Asks Disney and Lucasfilm to Honor Orlando Victim With Star Wars LGBT Character on Screen
IGN Comics editor and Star Wars fan Joshua Yehl has created a petition on Change.org which asks Disney CEO Bob Iger and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy to consider naming the Star Wars films’ first on-screen LGBT character after his friend Drew Leinonen, who was one of the 49 people slain in the Orlando shooting on June 12th.
The video Yehl created for the petition is incredibly heartfelt, to say the least. He reminisces about his best friend, and goes on to extol the virtues of having proper representation, especially within Star Wars films. He cites John Boyega’s performance as Finn and Daisy Ridley’s excellent embodiment of Rey as two prime examples of how good a movie can be when there are more than just the default faces up on screen. His suggestion to use Leinonen’s likeness, name, or whatever they wish would indeed be very nice to see, as Star Wars is definitely a universe that’s proven to be more than a little bit lacking in terms of LGBTQIA representation–at least, on-screen, that is.
The petition reads, in part:
This is a universe with Wookies, Jawas, and Hutts, so why can’t there be a visible LGBT character on screen? This tragedy happened because of hate, but Star Wars is something that unites people, so fulfilling this request would only serve to bring more love into the world, and that’s what Drew was all about. It’s vitally important that LGBT people are included in mainstream media because it will show that we don’t need to be feared or hated or hidden. We can be part of the rebellion and we can fight evil, and we can do it while being who we are with pride.
It’s so very touching that Yehl really wants to honor his best friend’s memory, and so, too, do 964 other people as of this writing. That puts Yehl about 36 signatures away from his goal of 1,000 signatures. If you want to help #PutDrewInStarWars, you should head over to the petition to sign.
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