A Brazilian judge ordered Netflix to remove The First Temptation of Christ from its streaming service on Wednesday.
However, the president of Brazil’s Supreme Court reversed the decision.
“We are not neglecting the relevance of respect for the Christian faith (as well as all other religious beliefs or their absence). However, it should not be assumed that a humorous satire has the power to undermine the values of the Christian faith, whose existence has been in existence for more than two thousand years,” Minister Dias Toffoli said.
Netflix Brazil said they “strongly support artistic expression” and “will fight to defend this important principle, which is the heart of great stories.”
Brazilian-based YouTube company Porta dos Fundos produced the 45-minute Christmas special depicting Jesus coming home for his birthday with his boyfriend to meet Mary and Joseph. The film also illustrates Mary as a pot-smoking adulterer.
Outrage against the special led to one Catholic organization’s petition for the movie’s removal, which generated almost 2.4 million signatures.
The petition demands “the removal of the film from the Netflix.” It also calls for a public retraction “as they have seriously offended Christians.”
Brazilian judge Benedicto Abicair ordered Netflix to remove the offensive content from its service in response to the viral petition. He explained that removing the film “is beneficial not only to the Christian community, but to Brazilian society, which is mostly Christian.”
In addition to the petition, the film’s producers also fell victim to a firebomb attack on the company’s headquarters last month. Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro’s son Eduardo Bolsonaro also denounced the movie in a tweet, calling it “garbage.”
“We are sorry that this garbage got this far in Poland,” Bolsonaro tweeted. “They do not represent Brazilian society…”
Bishop Joseph Strickland of the Diocese of Tyler, Texas said he cancelled his Netflix subscription after the film’s release.
“Just cancelled Netflix,” the Bishop tweeted. “Hardly have time to watch it anyway, but blasphemers don’t deserve a penny of support!”