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For as long as I could remember, I’ve been a huge fan of Pixar. It started when I was 7, and the original Toy Story filmed came out. I watched the film and would then act out the scenes with my toys later on. This, without me knowing helping me build on my communication as someone who grew up with challenges in that area growing up autistic. Later on, I’d become fascinated by a wide range of movies that helped with my ‘tunnel vision,’ also known as the inability at times to understand the perspectives of others. Watching so many characters over my life helped me open up to understanding how others think and feel.

Massimo Marcovaldo

I was reminded of these experiences recently when Pixar’s new film Luca premiered on Disney Plus on 6/18/21. Disney + says of the film, “Set in a seaside town on the Italian Riviera, Disney and Pixar’s “Luca” is a coming-of-age story about a young boy experiencing an unforgettable summer. Luca shares these adventures with his friend, Alberto, but all the fun is threatened by a deeply-held secret: they are sea monsters from another world below the water’s surface.

As a disability advocate, I was very excited to find out that this film featured Massimo Marcovaldo – father of one of the main protagonists in the movie in Giulia. He has a limb difference and is a congenital amputee who was born without one arm. While his disability is only briefly mentioned, representing those with disabilities (who comprise the most significant minority in the United States) is essential. I have taken my love of films to work as an autism entertainment consultant today behind film and television scenes to bring a realistic portrayal of different disabilities to the screen. Seeing disabled people getting spotlighted in our entertainment industry is lovely to see.

Often a congenital amputee is a condition caused by Amniotic Band Syndrome. As part of my video series where I give a platform for people impacted by a diagnosis to share their stories, I spotlighted a young woman named Kelsey who was born without her right hand and dreams of pursuing a singing career. That was my first introduction to limb differences.

I’d recommend Luca with no reservations and applaud Disney and Pixar for this step towards more inclusion of those with disabilities in the entertainment industry.

Have you checked out this film yet? Tell me what you thought in the comments.

I currently work with film crews to bring a realistic portrayal of autism to their movies based on my experiences studying theater and growing up on the autism spectrum. Need some help with your next film? Reach out to us here for more information!

Follow my journey on Facebook, my Facebook Fan Page, & Instagram!

My name is Kerry Magro, a professional speaker and best-selling author who is also on the autism spectrum that started the nonprofit KFM Making a Difference in 2011 to help students with autism receive scholarship aid to pursue a post-secondary education. Help support me so I can continue to help students with autism go to college by making a tax-deductible donation to our nonprofit here.

Follow my journey on Facebook, my Facebook Fan Page, & Instagram!

My name is Kerry Magro, a professional speaker and best-selling author who is also on the autism spectrum that started the nonprofit KFM Making a Difference in 2011 to help students with autism receive scholarship aid to pursue a post-secondary education. Help support me so I can continue to help students with autism go to college by making a tax-deductible donation to our nonprofit here.