A Disney employee is being lambasted online after a viral video showed him interrupting a couple’s dream wedding proposal.
A Disney spokesperson told Newsweek that the attempted proposal took place at Disneyland Paris, on a platform with the background of Sleeping Beauty Castle in perfect view.
But as the 21-second video begins, the man drops to one knee holding the ring with which he is about to propose to his significant other when a male employee scurries into the scene, darts between the two—the man still kneeling—and grabs the ring box out of his hand.
Onlookers seem confused by the scene, some even booing the employee who interrupted the couple’s happy moment. The male partner donned in all white clothing can be heard uttering something along the lines of: “She said yes,” pointing to a potential employee out of frame.
“Yes, that’s great but over here will be even better,” the employee said, leading the couple off the elevated platform and near a metal gate.
More boos rained upon the employee.
The video poster with the username u/wasgehtlan, in a comment under the video, said his friend “actually asked a female co-worker” if proposing on the platform was OK.
“The woman gave him permission, [then] this POS ran up to him and [grabbed] the ring,” the poster said.
“We regret how this was handled,” the Disney spokesperson added. “We have apologized to the couple involved and offered to make it right.”
A moment the couple would have remembered forever is now going to be remembered for different reasons. Redditors were full-throated in their comments regarding the Disney employee, with one saying, “He’s so proud of himself.”
“Look how f**king smug this guy is, just standing there and pointing to the gate,” another user said.
One user joked that the couple never paid their “$149 optional ‘Proposal Photograph’ fee as part of their admission.
Many questioned whether the employee would lose his job, or was fired already, for the incident—or whether that is part of general employee policy.
One Redditor alleged that he knows an employee who works for Disney, who told him that company employees are “explicitly told that we never touch a guest without their clear permission, given either verbally or through body language. We’re not allowed to take their property under any circumstances and doing so results in termination.
“We’re also trained to do anything we can to keep our guests happy and continue to sell the image of ‘most magical place on Earth,‘” the employee allegedly told the Redditor. “This employee will be terminated pretty swiftly should this video make it to the right people. All he had to do was wait 10 seconds. Get it out there and he’s a goner.”
A Disney employee handbook found online from 2016 specifies that employees will face discipline or even immediate termination if “conduct toward the employee’s managers, co-workers, or anyone with whom the employee comes in contact while performing work for the Company that is unprofessional, discourteous or disrespectful.”
Similar wedding proposals have been documented at Disney parks in the past, including one man who in 2018 sued the company for not only allegedly interrupting his proposal at the Magic Kingdom but also accusing an employee of physical harassment and even threatening to “punch” his partner.
A Psychology Today study released in 2021 stated that “when men proposed in front of other people, their proposals were more likely to be rejected.” When proposals were accepted, others were present less than one-third of the time. But of those rejected, people were in the vicinity about 45 percent of the time.
Newsweek reached out to the Reddit poster for comment.
Update 6/3/22, 1:55 p.m. ET: This story was updated with additional information and a photo of Disneyland Paris.