Fans Petition 'Star Wars' to Include First Gay Character to Honor Orlando Victims

Joshua Yehl has launched an online petition to honor Drew Leinonen, urging 'Star Wars' filmmakers to use his name for the first LGBT character in 'Star Wars' universe.

AceShowbiz - More than three thousand people have rallied to make Drew Leinonen the first gay character in "Star Wars" universe. The petition is posted on by Joshua Yehl along with headline "Make Orlando Victim Drew Leinonen the First LGBT Star Wars Movie Character" following the Orlando massacre on June 11.

Addressed to Kathleen Kennedy (President of Lucasfilm), Bob Iger (CEO of The Walt Disney Company) and all of the crew behind the "Star Wars" films, the message reads, "I'm writing this letter to request that Drew's passing be honored by using him as inspiration for the first-ever LGBT Star Wars character to appear in a movie. How this is done - using his likeness, running his name through one of those Star Wars Name Generators, etc."

He adds, "This character will not only honor Drew but all of the other victims at Pulse in Orlando, including his boyfriend Juan Ramon Guerrero, and every LGBT person to ever lose their life to hate."

Yehl recounts Drew's passion for the franchise. Through the message, he also makes an appeal for "Star Wars" to include gay character as a hero alongside the other protagonists. Therefore, people will be able to see LGBT people as no different from the straight ones.

He also quotes "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" director J.J. Abrams on the message, "'Star Wars' has never had a gay character appear on screen before, but as 'The Force Awakens' director J.J. Abrams recently said on the topic, 'The fun of 'Star Wars' is the glory of possibility. So it seems insanely narrow-minded and counter-intuitive to say that there wouldn't be a homosexual character in that world.' "

At the time of writing, the six-day-old petition has 3.442 signatures. One of the petitioners writes, "Disney can do it and they need to do it!!" Another petitioner adds, "Such a good idea, the galaxy far far away is diverse so it's only right that we finally get a mainstream LGBT character! Such a lovely way to remember the victims of pulse and shine a light through the hate."

Yehl closes his petition by adding, "Spread the word with #PutDrewInStarWars."

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