dancing around

Does Disney Want To Keep The Gays Out Of Its Family-Friendly Programming?

Executives at Disney were none too pleased with Johnny Depp’s flamboyant portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean, the actor tells January’s Vanity Fair. Which is weird, because didn’t Depp’s flamboyant portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow earn the media giant over one billion dollars? But that’s not where Disney’s fear of going too gay ends. It extends all the way to ABC’s Dancing With The Stars, apparently.

Though producers of the major network hit no-so-secretly approached Portia DeGeneres about appearing on the show, possibly mimicking Israel’s version that featured the since-dismissed all-lady couple, “insiders close to the show” tell Fox News’ Pop Tarts that Dancing won’t be signing up a same-sex pair anytime soon. Not after they managed to score big in Middle America with Bristol Palin.

Insiders close to the show told Pop Tarts that a same-sex couple will “never happen” in the U.S – at least not yet. “ABC and Disney are afraid of the negative backlash from viewers after watching a same-sex couple grind on stage,” explained our snitch. “Middle America isn’t there yet – and judging by the conservatives who voted to keep Bristol in the competition, a same-sex rumba won’t happen anytime soon – at least not in the ‘Disney’ funded ballroom.” A rep for “DWTS” did not respond for comment.

Entertainment industry expert John Ziegler concurred that it would be a bad move on ABC’s part to feature a same-sex dance couple. “The show just got a huge boost of ‘Middle America’ viewers with the success of Bristol Palin. They are not going to blow that, especially when there is no need,” he said. “The show is on a roll and Margaret Cho’s overt lesbianism did not resonate with viewers. [She was the third contestant to be eliminated this past season.] The gay community is already watching, this would be a stupid ratings move, unless of course the same sex couple involved two hot women!”

Though really, that’s all just speculation. And if Dancing producers know one thing, it’s what attracts big ratings. And the shock value over seeing two gals tango would certainly deliver. And I’d be remiss not to mention all the queer character’s Disney’s networks feature, in particular ABC. But it seems the company might have different thoughts about The Gay when it comes to family-oriented programming like Pirates and Dancing.

As for Depp, when a Disney exec asked whether Depp’s character was indeed gay, the actor told her “all my characters are gay.” She was horrified.