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Does Disney really ban God from its movies?

Published: Friday, April 25 2014 2:35 p.m. MDT

Disney's latest princess movie, "Frozen," was released November 2013. The film's writers said they had to avoid using God in the film, which has raised concerns throughout the media.

Disney

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Disney may paint with all the colors of the wind, but it won’t use the word “God.”

About two weeks ago, NPR’s Terry Gross interviewed Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, songwriters for the hit family animated film “Frozen.” During the interview, Anderson-Lopez said that the lyrics couldn’t get too holy.

“It's funny. One of the only places you have to draw the line at Disney is with religious things, the word 'God,' ” Anderson-Lopez said. “You can't put it in the movies.”

Interestingly, this can be seen in Disney movies other than "Frozen." In Disney's "Thor: The Dark World," Odin, Thor's father, corrected his son and said that they weren't gods, even though the Marvel comics traditionally referred to them as "divine beings," reported The Washington Post.

Disney hasn't responded to NPR's story, as of this writing. But is what Anderson-Lopez said true?

Deacon Greg Kandra of Patheos pointed out a song in which God was the focal point — “God Help the Outcasts” from “Hunchback of Notre Dame.” The video, Kandra noted, features a gypsy character approaching “the face of Christ” when she starts singing.

Still, Disney supposedly banning God from its films is likely to fuel conservative critics, who have critiqued Disney films for a supposed “pro-gay” agenda with the “Frozen” movie, wrote Andrew Pulver for The Guardian.

This may not be limited to “Frozen,” though, as The Atlantic’s Akash Nikolas wrote on April 23 that many of Disney’s films could be seen as featuring a pro-gay stance, as characters are often searching for something outside the norm. This doesn’t necessarily mean the films are spreading a pro-gay agenda, Nikolas wrote, but rather kids can be whoever they wish.

“Through conventional happy endings for outcasts and oddballs, Disney films let every child know that it’s OK to be different.”

On the other hand, some young girls have tried too hard to conform to the Disney princess mold, leading them to search for a fairy-tale lifestyle that never comes, The Federalists Anna Mussmann wrote.

“The princess fantasy lures little girls in with shiny rhinestones and simultaneously tells them everything that they already believe. In a sense it is developmentally appropriate,” Mussmann wrote. “However, the job of adults is not merely to mirror children back to themselves. Our job is to help them mature and grow beyond the narcissism of babyhood.”

No matter the impact Disney is having on everyday Americans or young girls, the company’s films are still allowed in the Christian home, wrote Alex Kocman of Charisma News.

“American evangelicals have yet to take a broad stance on whether the company has overstayed its welcome in the conservative Christian home,” Kocman wrote. “But one thing is certain — if God was ever welcome in Disney before, he’s long since gone.”

Email: hscribner@deseretdigital.com

Twitter: @herbscribner

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