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There has been a lot of hype surrounding the release of Space Jam: A New Legacy.
Much of the media attention has been solely focused on NBA megastar LeBron James, who will be making his acting debut by replacing the legendary Jordan who starred in the original 1996 film.
But it seems the supporting cast is getting just as much coverage as the leading role - although for entirely different reasons.
After news broke last week that the film's director Malcolm D. Lee would be altering the look of Lola Bunny to make her "less sexualised", it appears another character has also come under fire.
Pepe Le Pew, who has been a Looney Tunes character since 1945, has been cut from Space Jam 2 following mounting pressure from the public.
The French skunk, who also featured in the original Space Jam movie, found himself in the firing line with film fans accusing him of "normalising rape culture" with his overly-aggressive and persistent sexual advances towards females.
And according to reports, scenes from the new movie had already been partially completed before his axing.
The brunt of the backlash appears to have come from New York Times writer Charles M. Blow, who took to social media recently to explain exactly why Pepe Le Pew "added to rape culture" with his actions.
He tweeted: "RW blogs are mad because I said Pepe Le Pew added to rape culture. Let's see.
"1. He grabs/kisses a girl/stranger, repeatedly, w/o consent and against her will.
"2. She struggles mightily to get away from him, but he won't release her.
"3. He locks a door to prevent her from escaping.
This helped teach boys that "no" didn't really mean no, that it was a part of "the game", the starting line of a power struggle. It taught overcoming a woman's strenuous, even physical objections, was normal, adorable, funny. They didn't even give the woman the ability to SPEAK.
- Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) March 6, 2021
"This helped teach boys that 'no' didn't really mean no, that it was a part of 'the game', the starting line of a power struggle.
"It taught overcoming a woman's strenuous, even physical objections, was normal, adorable, funny.
"They didn't even give the woman the ability to SPEAK."
Charles M. Blow also posted a pretty damning video as evidence to accompany his claims.
Various reports suggest Pepe Le Pew has officially been dropped from the new film, although Warner Brothers are yet to comment themselves.
But it seems Pepe isn't the only character under threat either.
Gabriel Iglesias, who voices Speedy Gonzales in Space Jam 2, believes his character could also be booted from the movie following further backlash from Blow.
I am the voice of Speedy Gonzales in the new Space Jam. Does this mean they are gonna try to cancel Fluffy too? U can't catch me cancel culture. I'm the fastest mouse in all of Mexico :dash: pic.twitter.com/Ov4wjO00kM
- G a b r i e l - I g l e s i a s (@fluffyguy) March 7, 2021
Blow recently claimed that Speedy Gonzales "helped popularise the corrosive stereotype of the drunk and lethargic Mexicans".
But Iglesias hit back, tweeting:"I am the voice of Speedy Gonzales in the new Space Jam. Does this mean they are gonna try to cancel Fluffy (his other character) too? You can't catch me cancel culture. I'm the fastest mouse in all of Mexico."
Featured Image Credit: Warner Brothers
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