Puppy love

Animated film about a gay boy’s crush is so cute it hurts

Prepare to have your heartstrings tugged.

Children’s entertainment has made some modest strides in breaking free of outdated gender roles, but there’s still a huge void in queer representation aimed at a family-friendly crowd.

A new animated film is setting out to change that, and the recently-released trailer is causing hearts to melt across the web.

In A Heartbeat was created by Beth David and Esteban Bravo, two animation students at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Florida. It tells the story of a closeted boy who “runs the risk of being outed by his own heart after it pops out of his chest to chase down the boy of his dreams.”

As if that short synopsis wasn’t enough to send a shiver down your spine, here’s the trailer to seal the deal:

“We want to put out a message of love and self acceptance to all the kids and young people who struggle to identify as LGBT+ just like Sherwin does,” David said.

The film, partly funded via a 2016 viral Kickstarter campaign, is set to be released for free online this summer.

Judging by this reaction on Twitter, it’ll make quite the impression: