Skip to main content

CBS and Fox Studios Lead TV Challenge to Cast More People with Disabilities


The Ruderman Family Foundation has announced the preliminary results for its Ruderman TV Challenge to audition and cast more actors with disabilities, with CBS and 20th Century Fox leading the way seven months in. The Challenge was designed to reach television executives, showrunners, producers, content creators and casting directors with a very simple request: audition and cast more actors with disabilities this pilot and TV season, as people with disabilities remains the most marginalized group in Hollywood.

Based on the results of the Challenge, network, cable, and internet content creators appear to be more open to the idea of giving actors with disabilities a chance. The study found that CBS leads in the employment with 11 series and pilots having hired performers with disabilities across the network, while 20th Century Fox is excelling in the auditioning of performers with disabilities. 60 percent of 20th Century Fox drama shows (14 out of 23) and 70 percent of its comedy shows (9 out of 13) auditioned performers with disabilities for the past and current TV season. Several other platforms also exhibited promising numbers.

“So many times when producers or casting directors hear the word ‘disability’ they think ‘inability’ and we need to change this preconception,” said Daryl “Chill” Mitchell co-author of the White Paper and one of the very few primetime series performers with a disability (NCIS: New Orleans on CBS). “What we want is the chance to audition. … I wouldn’t have my job if I wasn’t the right fit.”

Approximately 20% of Americans have a disability, but last TV season saw just 1.7% of characters on screen having a disability. This demonstrates the drastic need for a more accurate representation of people with disabilities on screen in terms of authentic casting and portrayals.

“The representation of actors with disabilities on television remains woefully inadequate,” said Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “Despite incremental progress in the right direction by a few networks and studios, actors with disabilities are the most underrepresented minority in Hollywood."

The Ruderman TV Challenge was built upon last year’s widely-covered Ruderman White Paper on the Employment of Actors with Disabilities, a study which found that an astonishing 95% of characters with disabilities on TV are played by non-disabled actors.

The Ruderman Family Foundation, along with its collaborators are hopeful that initiatives like this Challenge will be able to continue promoting the trend of greater auditioning and authentic casting of performers with disabilities.

“The Ruderman Family Foundation and Lights! Camera! Access! 2.0 Collaborative are raising disability awareness in the entertainment industry,” said Tari Hartman Squire, creator of the LCA2.0 Collaborative and a co-author of the White Paper. “We are identifying headwinds that preclude inclusion and are working to create sustainable strategies with the entertainment industry in order to increase employment and reframe disability portrayals to more accurately portray the American Scene. Diversity is a business imperative – inclusion is a choice”
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Richard Armitage interview on SLEEPWALKER

SLEEPWALKER is the latest film from director Elliott Lester. Troubled by bouts of sleepwalking and disturbing nightmares, graduate student Sarah Foster goes to her university's sleep research center for help. When she wakes up after her first night of being monitored, the world she lives in seems to have changed in subtle, Twilight-Zone-esque ways. In fact, every time she goes to sleep now, she wakes up in a slightly different version of her world. With the help of sleep researcher Dr. Scott White, she tries to work her way back to the reality she started in. But when they finally succeed, it’s revealed that Sarah’s world is not what she thought at all.

Today my guest is one of the stars SLEEPWALKER, Richard Armitage. Tonight we talk about his work on that film as well as his work as Thorin Oakenshiled in The Hobbit Films, as John Proctor in The Crucible, and his upcoming films Ocens 8 and the Julie Delpy directed film My Zoe.

Sleepwalker is Now Available on Digital HD and On Dem…

LAFF Review AND THEN THERE WAS EVE

2017
Directed By: Savannah Bloch
Starring: Tania Nolan, Rachel Crowl, Mary Holland, Karan Soni, John Kassir, and Anne Gee Byrd



Alyssa (Nolan) wakes up to find her home pillaged and her husband missing. The burglars have taken everything, down to the photos of her husband. The police offer little help so she turns to a friend of the family Eve (Crowl) for assistance. The film is less of a "who done it" and more of a "what happened."

The prolonged second act of the film focuses on the relationship between Eve and Alyssa. The suspense of the film lingers in the background while their relationship grows. In fact, clues of what is to come are clearly laid out in a way that allows the viewer to see where the film is headed before it gets there. I'm not sure if this is by design but the effect of having the stories trajectory clearly laid out gives the audience permission to accept this blossoming relationship.

Nolan and Crowl both give stunning performances that anc…

BFF review SWEET PARENTS

SWEET PARENTS review 2017
Directed By: David Bly
Starring: David Bly and Leah Rudick
Written By: David Bly and Leah Rudick

Moving to New York City with ambitions of making it as an artist is an uphill battle. Hell, moving to New York with ambitions of breaking into fast food is an uphill battle. Exorbitant rent makes it difficult if not impossible to get a temp job while you audition, paint, write, or sculpt. And paying $28 for an artisan PB&J not only has a heavy tax on your pocketbook, over time it can carry a greater burden on your soul. Spending tons of money to only feel like you are barely keeping your head above water is a crushing way to exist.

SWEET PARENTS is the story of a young couple who have been living the artists struggle in NYC for close to 8 years. Will has dreams of making it as a Chef and Gabby wants to become a professional sculptor. Both start side relationships, as last ditch efforts to support their careers, in what becomes a choice between ambition and lo…