“Electric cars are gay.”
Vince Vaughn’s character quips this line in the opening of the trailer for the new Ron Howard comedy “The Dilemma.” The joke caused a stir among numerous gay-rights activists and CNN's Anderson Cooper Friday, leading Universal to cut the scene from the trailer.
The trailer shows Vaughn's character in a boardroom trying to breathe some "rock and roll" cool into a car he describes as “my-parents-are-chaperoning-the-dance-gay.”
On "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," Cooper warned about the consequences of throwing around words like "gay" and questioned Universal's decision to lure in audiences by using the word as a punchline.
“It’s used just as an insult among kids,” Cooper said. “We’ve got to change the way people use these words because these words to have power and they’re used like weapons.”
Universal issued a statement Friday saying the trailer “was not intended to cause anyone discomfort.”
The events come in the wake of news of anti-gay and bullying behavior across the country, such as the recent tragedy at Rutgers, where Tyler Clementi, a first year student took his life on September 22 after an intimate encounter was broadcast on the Internet.
According to Deadline, Universal screened the original trailer to gay groups like GLADD, as well as gay executives “and no one was offended and everyone had a positive response,” said a studio insider.