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While it may have come out 15 years ago, Jerry Seinfeld still felt the need to apologize about a certain kid’s movie.
While appearing on The Tonight Show on Monday, Seinfeld took the opportunity to apologize for what he called “a certain uncomfortable subtle sexual aspect of his animated 2006 film Bee Movie, in which he plays the lovable Barry B. Benson, a bumble bee who has a thing for Vanessa, a human character who was voiced by Renée Zellweger.
“[It] really was not intentional, but after it came out, I realized this is really not appropriate for children,” Seinfeld said about the film’s questionable sexual innuendos. “Because the bee seems to have a thing for the girl, and we don’t really want to pursue that as an idea in children’s entertainment.”
Fallon responded with, “No, of course not,” and the conversation moved elsewhere. The film has definitely had to reckon with its sexual undertone in the past, with co-writer Spike Feresten acknowledging how polarizing it is in a 2017 interview.
“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 told The New Statesman at the time.
He added that people were “repulsed” by the story because of the “odd relationship between an insect and a human woman,” while explaining that “there isn’t really an interspecies love affair movie, I think.”
Watch Seinfeld’s mea culpa above.