Sunday, January 30, 2005

For Disabled, It's Hooray for Hollywood - By Clyde Haberman
New York Times Friday, January 28, 2005

[Note: This is a typical story of Hollywood's coverage of disability issues. Articles of this sort seem to appear every Oscar season, when we find films with disability themes nominated for major awards. The reporter did not interview any Disability Studies scholars who write on these topics, such as Paul Longmore or Martin Norden, and again adopts language for people with disabilities that many activists would find objectionable. MD]

To no one's surprise, Jamie Foxx received a best-actor Oscar nomination this week for his mesmerizing portrayal of the blind Ray Charles in "Ray." To the surprise of some, perhaps, this was good news for New Yorkers with disabilities and for the people who help them.
When Hollywood turns its klieg lights on an illness, a disorder, a dysfunction, a handicap - the acceptable word is up to you - the public has a way of paying attention. On good days, that makes life easier for those who treat theproblem. On really good days, it can pry money loose from donors.
"It's clear to me that people refer to movies all the time," said Dr. Harold Koplewicz, director of the New York University Child Study Center, which deals with psychiatric illnesses in children.
At Lighthouse International, which helps blind and visually impaired people, officials are not counting on the Foxx nomination to bring in cash. But there are other possible rewards, said Barbara Silverstone, the president and chief executive. "Disabilities are being treated in films with much more accuracy, and not just blindness," she said. "A lot can be done to help the cause, so to speak, of raising public awareness."
By now, awareness may have been raised high enough to reach the rafters.
Hollywood has long cast a teary eye on diseases and disorders. "We're still reaping the benefits of 'The Miracle Worker,' " said Matt Campo, director ofdevelopment at the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults in Sands Point, on Long Island. That film, about the young Helen Keller's struggles, came out in 1962.
But over the last 15 years or so, disabilities have come to be cherished. For awhile, from the late 1980's on, it was all but impossible to win a best-actorOscar without playing a severely troubled character.
There was the autistic Dustin Hoffman in "Rain Man," the cerebral-palsied Daniel Day-Lewis in "My Left Foot," the criminally insane Anthony Hopkinsin "The Silence of the Lambs," the blind Al Pacino in "Scent of a Woman," the AIDS-afflicted Tom Hanks in "Philadelphia," the retarded Tom Hanks in "Forrest Gump," the alcoholic Nicolas Cage in "Leaving Las Vegas," the mentally shattered Geoffrey Rush in "Shine" and the obsessive-compulsive Jack Nicholsonin "As Good as It Gets."
Now we have the cinematically blind Mr. Foxx. For good measure, his competition includes Leonardo DiCaprio, who played the disturbed Howard Hughes in "The Aviator."
It's almost enough to make you wonder if it is wise to go to the movies without a medical dictionary. But for those who work with disorders, the benefits from these films and Oscars are unmistakable.
With "Philadelphia," Mr. Hanks made AIDS sufferers more acceptable to people unfamiliar with the disease, said Ana Oliveira, the executive director of Gay Men's Health Crisis. "They could not only see what AIDS looked like," shesaid, "they could see what that life looked like."
Mr. Hanks then took on AIDS as a cause, said Robert Hagerty, who is in charge of H.I.V. research at the New York University Center for AIDS Research. "If nothing else," he said, "it makes the actor personally identify, and then usehis clout to go raise money."
For Dr. Koplewicz, "As Good as It Gets" was a breakthrough. "Jack Nicholson gave O.C.D. a face," he said, referring to obsessive-compulsive disorder. "That translates into two things: destigmatizing it, and eventually permitting peopleto give money for it."
THE usefulness of films in shaking the money tree is questioned by John Frank, director of development at the Association for the Advancement of Blind and Retarded, in College Point, Queens. Still, "the movies get an intellectual discussion going," Mr. Frank said. "It peels back one of the layers of the onion."
Realism helps. Ms. Silverstone liked "Scent of a Woman." Lighthouse International had trained Mr. Pacino for his role. "Why shouldn't a blind person be able to tango?" she said. Indeed.
At one point, though, the Pacino character zooms along New York streets behind the wheel of a Ferrari. "We cringed a little at that," Ms. Silverstone said. The concern was that some people would take that scene literally and say, "Lookat the crazy things blind people do."
There is no such problem with "Ray." A blind man at a piano? Big deal. Besides, a little perspective can't hurt. "The reason Ray Charles was so great was not because he was blind," Ms. Silverstone said, "it was because he was talented."


TS said...

Nice Blog!!!   I thought I'd tell you about a site that will let give you places where
you can make extra cash! I made over $800 last month. Not bad for not doing much. Just put in your
zip code and up will pop up a list of places that are available. I live in a small area and found quite

Tom Naka said...

I have a health and dental benefit
site. It pretty much covers health and dental benefit
related stuff. Check it out if you get time :-)

Admin said...

Great blog, keep up the good work. Glad to see sites like this.

Here is another good site I said I would pass along.
Vegas Vacations

Editor Choice said...

Excellent and original blog. I will comeback.
Here an interesting site regarding: Chicago travel: Best prices at Chicago travel, best in travel industry in Chicago have great deals in travel industry on hotels, flights, Chicago tours, Concerts, Sports Tickets, Restaurants, sight seeing in Chicago and much more. Has an impressive guide on Chicago Travel Information, for your visit to Chicago, to provide useful travel information, hints and tips.

Dominicans resources said...

FREE Wordpress Hosted Blogs With 10 Customised Templates To Choose From at

old people

Free unlimited number of blogs

Anonymous said...

I like your blog. Thank you. They are really great . Ermunterung ++ .
Some new style Puma Speed is in fashion this year.
chaussure puma is Puma shoes in french . Many Franzose like seach “chaussure sport” by the internet when they need buy the Puma Shoes Or nike max shoes. The information age is really convenient .

By the way ,the nike max ltd is really good NIKE air shoes ,don’t forget buy the puma mens shoes and nike air max ltd by the internet when you need them . Do you know Nike Air Shoes is a best Air Shoes . another kinds of Nike shoes is better . For example , Nike Air Rift is good and Cheap Nike Shoes .the nike shox shoes is fitting to running.

Spring is coming, Do you think this season is not for Ugg Boots? maybe yes .but this season is best time that can buy the cheap ugg boots. Many sellers are selling discounted. Do not miss . Please view my fc2 blog and hair straighteners blog.
.thank you .

I like orange converse shoes ,I like to buy the cheap converse shoes by the internet shop . the puma shoes and the adidas shoes (or addidas shoes) are more on internet shop .i can buy the cheap nike shoes and cheap puma shoes online. It’s really convenient.
Many persons more like Puma basket shoes than nike air rift shoes . the Puma Cat shoes is a kind of Cheap Puma Shoes .
If you want to buy the Cheap Nike Air shoes ,you can buy them online. They are same as the Nike Air shoes authorized shop. Very high-caliber Air shoes and puma cat shoes . the cheap puma shoes as same as other.

polo shirts

ralph lauren polo shirts
chaussure puma

chaussure sport

chaussures puma

puma CAT

ed hardy clothing

ed hardy clothes

ed hardy womens

ed hardy sunglasses

ugg boots

cheap ugg boots

Anonymous said...

Replica Handbags
Fake Handbags
Knockoff Handbags

Replica Louis Vuitton Handbags
Replica Gucci Handbags
Replica Chanel Handbags
Prada Handbags
Replica Fendi Handbags
Replica Dolce Gabbana Handbags
Replica Chloe Handbags
Replica Jimmy Choo Handbags
Replica Thomas Wylde Handbags
Replica MiuMiu Handbags

Replica Balenciaga Handbags
Replica Coach Handbags
Replica Lancel Handbags
Replica Hermes Handbags
Replica Marc Jacobs Handbags
Replica Anya Hindmarch Handbags
Replica YSL Handbags
Replica Mulberry Handbags
Replica Givenchy Handbags
Replica Valentino Handbags
Replica Versace Handbags
Replica Cartier Handbags
Replica Marni Handbags
Replica Bottega Veneta Handbags
Replica Loewe Handbags
Replica Kooba Handbags

Replica Bally Handbags
Replica Burberry Handbags
Replica Christian Dior Handbags
Replica Juicy Couture Handbags
Replica Ferragamo Handbags
Replica Celine Handbags

Anonymous said...

The word "shanzhai" is very popular in China. It is industry phenomenon of imitation, high quality and low price. Moreover, cell phones are the representative of them.The global financial crisis led to a significant shrinkage of assets for people. "china wholesale" demonstrate the might. most of them would like buy the cheap cell phones now .

Through google search engine, when you put in "discount cell phones", you will find more than 15,000 pieces of related information. Cell phone china has been concerned in the world. Many international sellers can get a considerable profit by ways of wholesale cell phones from China and switch selling. So it is a very good job on cell phones wholesale in the current financial crisis.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

nike air max 90
nike air max 95
nike air max tn
nike air rift
nike shox r4
nike air max 360
nike shox nz
puma mens shoes
puma shoes
puma speed
nike shoes
nike air
nike air shoes
puma cat
air max trainers
mens nike air max
nike shoes air max
nike shoes shox
air shoes
nike shoe cart
puma future
cheap puma
sports shoes
nike air rifts
nike air rift trainer
nike air
nike rift
nike rift shoes
cheap nike air rifts
bape shoes
jeans shop
diesel jeans
levis jeans