Disney’s new film features some LGBTQ representation, the likes of which have never been seen in a Disney film, according to Out Magazine!
(WARNING: Light spoilers ahead if you haven’t already seen Jungle Cruise!)
Based on the classic Disneyland ride, Disney’s Jungle Cruise, starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Jack Whitehall and Emily Blunt, features a tender scene between Captain Frank “Skipper” Wolff (Dwayne Johnson) and McGregor (Jack Whitehall) in which McGregor explains his love for other men and has his feelings validated by Captain Frank.
Set in the World War I era during the early part of the 20th century, Jungle Cruise follows the adventures of a British scientist named Dr. Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) and her brother McGregor (Jack Whitehall) who are attempting to navigate themselves through the Amazon jungle in order to find the Tree of Life, with all of its mystical healing power. They enlist the help of weathered, cynical, and lying steamboat captain Frank “Skipper” Wolff.
In the poignant scene, Frank and McGregor open up to each other about their pasts, with McGregor going into detail with Frank about how he was once engaged to be married to a woman, but because his interests “lie elsewhere” he couldn’t bring himself to do it. The film never mentions a specific sexuality/label, but rather alludes to his queerness. During the moment, Frank assures him that there is nothing wrong with his interests “lying elsewhere.”
During a recent Jungle Cruise press conference, Johnson stated: “I felt that the scene was really exactly what it was, which was two men talking about what they loved and who they loved. It was as simple as that, and we were sharing a drink.”
“It was a scene that we really wanted to get right,” Whitehall added. “I think what’s so great about this movie is that all of the characters feel so fleshed out, and all of them have interesting backstories and are fully realized.”
Whitehall goes on to say, “In a lot of movies of this kind of genre, sometimes you’d have characters that are a little bit kinda two-dimensional. But I think it’s so great that we get to understand so much about each of these characters, and they all have reasons for being where they are and interesting and rich textured backstories. It makes you invested in them, and it makes you care about them. It makes you really on that journey with them.”
During an interview with Variety last week, Whitehall echoed the same sentiments, stating that he felt it was “a really well-written scene, and one that [we] certainly thought about and talked about.”
“I hope that it’s a scene that audiences enjoy,” Whitehall states. “I certainly felt at the time that I was proud of the work that we’d done.”
Jungle Cruise is now playing in theaters and also available to stream on Disney+ with Premier Access!