Comedian Jerry Seinfeld issued an apology for what he called the "uncomfortable, subtle sexual aspect" of 2007 kids' flick "Bee Movie."
The animated film — co-written by Seinfeld — follows a bee, voiced by Jerry Seinfeld, who falls in love with a human woman, voiced by actress Renée Zellweger.
What are the details?
Seinfeld appeared on Saturday's broadcast of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," where he admitted that the film may not have been appropriate for children and set a bizarre precedent in the process.
"I apologize for what seems to be a certain uncomfortable subtle sexual aspect of 'The Bee Movie,' which really was not intentional," he told Fallon. "But after it came out, I realized, 'This is really not appropriate for children,'" he joked. "Because the bee seems to have a thing for the girl. We don't really want to pursue that as an idea in children's entertainment."
Seinfeld was brought to the topic somewhat abruptly after Fallon congratulated Seinfeld on his recent 67th birthday.
"It always takes longer than people think, you know, to be a comedian," he told the host. "I had to go on the 'Tonight Show' and 'Letterman' like 80 times and then roast my nuts doing a TV series for nine years. Then I had to get married — I got married at 45. That takes a long time, to find a great person," he said. "I had three kids. I had to straighten their insane asses out, and then I had to make a movie with a bee."
'Never going to be sexual'
According to Insider, this isn't the first time someone involved in the film's production has spoken out to clarify the odd storyline.
Director Steve Hickner clarified in 2017 that the bee character and the female protagonist were "never going to be sexual or anything like that."
"It was purely friendship," Hickner said at the time for the film's 10th anniversary. "[M]aybe in Barry's mind he thought ... but it was never going to be that."
The film's script writer, Barry Marder, also admitted that he, too, believed that the storyline was "kind of weird."
Spike Feresten, fellow writer, added that viewers seemed to be split on the storyline and were either "entertained or repulsed," but doubled down on the defense that there was no "interspecies love affair" taking place in the film or its subtext.
"[The actors] would just be Barry and Vanessa, and we would write this dialogue for Barry and Vanessa, and read it over and have to remind ourselves, well, this is a tiny bee saying this, and the tiny bee is fighting with her boyfriend, so let's dial it back to friend, and make it less romantic, because it's getting weird," he said at the time.
Jerry Seinfeld Looks Back on the Bee Movie's Romantic Undertones | The Tonight Show www.youtube.com