After news broke that a scene in the upcoming Space Jam 2, which depicts basketball star Lebron James teaching creepy animated skunk Pepé Le Pew about consent, was cut from the movie, the actress playing the character who Pepé harasses is calling for the scene to be released anyway.
Greice Santo, an actress best known for playing Blanca on Jane the Virgin, says the scene being cut was disappointing to her, as an outspoken advocate against sexual harassment. “For me, it was so important to have this scene in a movie to inspire the younger generations, and also the older generations, so we can correct that behavior,” Santo told the Los Angeles Times. “I felt that this scene was a way to show kids that this kind of behavior is wrong.”
This might sound less absurd if we weren’t talking about a decades-old animated skunk hitting on a living, human woman. In the now-deleted scene, the “problematic” Pepe approaches Santo’s character in a bar. After Pepé starts kissing her arm, she pushes him away and then pours her drink on him, before eventually backhanding him; this apparently leads into a line where Lebron James tells the skunk that he “can’t grab other Tunes without their consent.” (Even without this scene, I am unreasonably excited to see this absurd nightmare of a movie.)
Santo, whose representative is offering a $100,000 “reward” to anyone who can provide the footage of the animated/live action scene, says that despite the fact that it was cut from the movie, she hopes the footage can be released somehow.
In a statement to the LA Times on the situation, Warner Bros said: “it is a crime for someone to solicit another to steal and distribute Warner Bros.’ property.”