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ITV edits Spider-Man to remove Peter Parker’s homophobic joke

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ITV removed one line of dialogue from its broadcast of the 2002 film Spider-Man.

The network aired Sam Raimi’s superhero film, which stars Tobey Maguire as the titular webslinger, on Saturday (23 April) on ITV2.

A joke, which many viewers have criticised as blatantly homophobic, was edited out of the film by the network.

The line occurs early on in the film when Maguire’s Peter Parker enters a wrestling contest after discovering his superhero powers.

“That’s a cute outfit. Did your husband give it to you?” Parker says to his opponent.

ITV removed the second part of his dialogue so that Parker only says: “That’s a cute outfit.”

In a statement issued to Variety, the network said: “We carefully consider the suitability of content we broadcast and appropriateness of language used to ensure that it meets audience expectations, especially when intended for family viewing.”

Earlier this week, it was reported that Disney is refusing to remove a line of dialogue from the forthcoming Marvel film Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness that references a lesbian relationship, meaning that it will not be permitted a theatrical release in Saudi Arabia.

Other Disney films including Onward and Eternals have been banned from the region due to similar reasons.

Warner Bros, however, agreed to remove gay references from the recently released Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore in order to secure a release in China.

Raimi’s 2002 Spider-Man, which also stars Kirsten Dunst, is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.

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