Beauty and the Beast

actor Ewan McGregor just can't resist having a little fun at the expense of those outraged about the inclusion of a minor gay character in the live-action

Beauty and the Beast

remake.

Controversy has swirled since the film's director confirmed that manservant LeFou, who plays the sidekick to the story's villain Gaston "is confused about his sexuality." Director Bill Condon has described one brief scene as a "gay moment."

Cue outrage from some quarters - and even a ban on the film being released in Malaysia.

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But McGregor was in a playful mood when he appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert this week.

"There was a little bit of controversy about this film ..." the host began.

"There's a lot of gay sex in it," McGregor interjected. "There's a LOT of gay sex in this cartoon. I think if you live anywhere near Alabama, you should not go and see this film. What would Jesus think?"

As Colbert tried to downplay LeFou's sexuality suggesting it was a subtle suggestion rather than an overt character trait, McGregor stood firm.

"I think he is a gay character," he announced.

"He is? I thought it turned out that it doesn't actually say?" asked Colbert, to which McGregor scoffed.

"It's just like: He IS a gay character. It's 2017, for f**k's sake!"

Beauty and the Beast is released in New Zealand cinemas on March 30.