CODA has been a major highlight of the Oscars this year for winning the award for best film. The film is themed around the only hearing member of a deaf family making efforts to help her family’s struggling fishing business while pursuing her own aspirations of being a singer. CODA has done a great job of bringing such an unexplored, yet pressing subject to audiences worldwide. In India, such an attempt was seen in Jalsa where a child with cerebral palsy was seen as a vital cast member in the film.
Such representation can mean a lot for the differently abled and gives them a massive opportunity to put their talent forth. And, CODA’s Best Picture and Best Supporting Actor triumph sent a very vocal message to the world of entertainment. This is not just a revelation into the casting journey of our entertainment industry but also a nod to awaken the audience to be more aware and embrace different narratives in mainstream cinema.
Surya Kasibhatla, who is diagnosed with cerebral palsy, in Amazon Prime Video’s new film Jalsa, has heightened the notion that differently abled actors are finally being given an opportunity to showcase their talent.
Such a film is an ode and a celebration of such talent that mainstream cinema doesn’t shed light on. Surya’s character of ‘Ayush’ in Jalsa is the heart of the film and serves as a massive platform for him to showcase his talent. In 2019, just 2.3 per cent of all speaking characters in the 100 top-grossing US Hollywood films were depicted with a disability and in Bollywood, Jalsa is the first film to cast a differently abled actor in a mainstream film. The film has given rise to a new horizon for casting professionals, filmmakers, and the global entertainment industry to think upon.
(Featured Image Credits: Instagram)