The Best Picture Oscar for “CODA” was historic for many reasons. For example, it includes the fact that after Hollywood historically ignored or misrepresented people with disabilities, it honored films with authentic castings of deaf people.
So can we expect a flood of films about people with disabilities? The 2022 Oscar contenders so far have shown that it’s not a flood, but a trickle. “Causeway,” “Cha Cha Real Smooth,” “The Greatest Beer Run Ever,” and “Lady Chatterley’s Lover” all feature genuine casting, with disabled actors playing disabled characters. (What a concept!)
“Beer Run” director and co-writer Peter Farrelly and his brother Bobby have always cast disabled actors.
“Twenty percent of the world is disabled,” he says. variety“In the making of movies and TV shows, it wouldn’t be a real world without people with disabilities.”
“Cha-Cha” writer-director Cooper Rafe says it never occurred to him to audition a non-autistic actor for the central role of Laura, who is on the autism spectrum. Actress Vanessa Berghardt.
Leif speaks variety“In film, we always try to make the scenes more real and authentic, and the first step is to cast the person who best fills the role. is a waste of time. They do research, but they don’t have hearts.”
Lady Chatterley’s Lover is the second feature film directed by Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre. Her 2013 short “Atlantic Avenue” featured wheelchair actress Leopoldin Her Huy Goo Her De Pointe. So wheelchair user Clifford, for her role of Lord Chatterley, “clearly wanted to open up the casting to people with disabilities,” she says. “It’s important to be authentic and to give a chance,” she said.
The role is played by Matthew Duckett, a stage actor with cerebral palsy who is making his feature film debut.
Deaf actor Russell Harvard has one scene in “Causeway” as Jennifer Lawrence’s brother, and it’s impressive.
Four award-contending films of disabled characters fall short of accurately representing the world, but they’re a leap forward from most of the Oscar era. These films help answer the question of whether actors with disabilities can succeed in Hollywood. they are already working.
After the #OscarsSoWhite movement in 2015, decision makers have worked to make the industry, including the Academy Awards, more inclusive.
This year’s nominees are race/ethnic and gender based 2015 and beyond, including Bardo, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Everything Everywhere All At Once, Liberation, Inspection and Till. It shows the growth of diversity. “Woman King” and “Woman Talking”. So far, however, people with disabilities have not always been part of the inclusion movement.
Burghardt says that prior to “Cha Cha,” her agents typically didn’t reveal her autism.
For years, Farrelly points out that the script had to specify that the character wasn’t white in order for employers to take this into account. No need to mention species diversity, I hope this happens to people with disabilities, and if you give them an audition, they might be shocked at how many good actors don’t get a chance.
Farrelly’s fact-based “Beer Run” focuses on Chicky (Zac Efron) and his friends, including Brandon (McGregor Arnie), who is uncommented on crutches for his cerebral palsy. They are just part of everyday life.
Jenny Gold directed the documentary “CinemAbility: The Art of Inclusion” centered on this topic.
she tells variety“It is important for employers to understand that people with disabilities can perform their jobs well.”
She is part of a group working to form a board committee on disability employment.
“There are a lot of programs that deal with diversity, but they rarely mention disability. Things are opening up now, even in American companies, which is great.”
There is a perception that hiring people with disabilities increases project complexity and budget.
Farrelly exclaims: I hear it all the time. I have worked with literally hundreds of disabled actors and they have never interfered with us. I’m an actor. This is 2022. we can make it work. “
As for the behind-the-camera work, some people are working there now, but keep their disabilities a secret. increase. Farrelly advises that artists with disabilities have “many opportunities” in post-production.
The French-born director Clermont-Tonneret seems genuinely taken aback by the idea that disabled workers in front of and behind the camera can make the production more difficult.
“Never heard of it. It doesn’t make sense. Why? It should never matter.”
Burghardt concludes with a sigh. Being disabled is not such a big deal. “