Netflix, GLAAD, and stars react to lesbian wedding ad being pulled from Hallmark channel
Hallmark is facing backlash after pulling several commercials featuring two brides kissing for the wedding planning site Zola. The company has decided it will no longer run ads on the network, including a similar video that featured a heterosexual couple tying the knot Hallmark was still airing.
Zola’s chief marketing officer Mike Chi told THR, “The only difference between the commercials that were flagged and the ones that were approved was that the commercials that did not meet Hallmark’s standards included a lesbian couple kissing. Hallmark approved a commercial where a heterosexual couple kissed. All kisses, couples and marriages are equal celebrations of love and we will no longer be advertising on Hallmark.”
The network is also getting backlash and calls for boycott from the LGBTQ community and celebrities on Sunday, who are in support of the messaging in the ad that conservative mom group One Million Moms helped ban.
“Advertisers on @hallmarkchannel should see this news and question whether they want to be associated with a network that chooses to bow to fringe anti-LGBTQ activist groups, which solely exist to harm LGBTQ families,” GLAAD posted to Twitter on Sunday.
Netflix seized the opportunity to show their support for the LGBTQ community by sharing relevant content currently available to stream.
“Titles Featuring Lesbians Joyfully Existing And Also It’s Christmas Can We Just Let People Love Who They Love,” the streamer posted to Twitter with a photo of two women kissing from their holiday film Let It Snow and their new series Merry Happy Whatever.
Actor William Shatner added his voice to those shaming Hallmark, asking the network and their parent company Crown Media Family Networks to reconsider their decision.
“Shame on @hallmarkchannel! Put the commercials back! @1milmoms has 4K followers. I have 2.5 million and my friends have more. Who are you going to listen to? They are NOT a majority here. Both me and my followers watch your shows, do they? #loveislove Do the right thing.”
Wynona Earp star Kat Barrell says Hallmark’s decision to pull the ads is “heartbreaking” after discussions between her and the network were moving in a more positive direction “towards more inclusivity.” In the thread, she explains “she was so proud to be a part of that.”
Lauren Sick, who served as the director of the Zola advertisement, shared her support of the video’s messaging and the LGBTQ community via Twitter.
Ellen Degeneres slammed the network and is looking for answers.
The network stands by their decision to eliminate the ads, they told The Hollywood Reporter in a statement.
“Crown Media Family Networks made the decision to pull the commercials. The debate surrounding these commercials on all sides was distracting from the purpose of our network, which is to provide entertainment value.”