How ‘Speechless,’ ‘Atlantic Avenue,’ ‘Krystal’ Showcase the Underserved

Yet another article bemoaning the lack of disability representation in movies and TV. Hey Hollywood, give us more working disabled actors so we can stop complaining about this, okay?

For all the noise Hollywood has made these past few years over the issue of racial diversity and gender equality in film and TV, one segment of society remains drastically underserved — the disabled. Strides have been made — Becky (Lauren Potter) on “Glee” had Down syndrome; ABC series “Speechless” centers on JJ, a teenage boy with cerebral palsy played by Micah Fowler, who has the disorder in real life — but those examples are few and far between. For the most part, there are no disabled characters on the big and small screens, and if there are, they are not played by actors with disabilities. Financial constraints and budgetary concerns are often cited as the reason studios don’t do a better job of hiring disabled actors. Even more disheartening is that if there is a story focusing on a character with a disability, his entire life story revolves around the fact that he is disabled. Case in point: in the 2016 romantic drama “Me Before You,” the lead character, a rich man paralyzed from the neck down in a motorcycle accident, is so miserable, he checks himself into a Swiss assisted-suicide center and kills himself.

Read the rest at Variety

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