Have you had a chance to see Pixar's latest film "Finding Dory" yet? The sequel to 2003 film "Finding Nemo" is already a box office hit.
The movie is also making some pretty big waves in the world of disability awareness. USA Today recently published an article ("How 'Finding Dory' could change the conversation around disabilities") that looks at how the film portrays characters who overcome obstacles despite an array of challenges and disabilities.
The article gives background on the directors thought process behind how the character Dory is portrayed. For those who don't know, Dory is the wide-eyed, blue tang fish who suffers from memory loss every 10 seconds or so.
“I wasn’t trying to literally say she’s a representation of a specific (disability),” says director Andrew Stanton. “I just wanted to show that this one thing that was funny and actually helpful in the first movie, (Dory) saw as a burden. And she had to apologize for it."
The article also includes feedback from Mitch Prinstein, director of clinical psychology at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. "Pixar's willingness to give disability such high-profile exposure is pivotal in the conversation about mental disorders," Prinstein says. He goes on to say that the stigma is generalized by adults, noting that if we get children to think about it now and have awareness of psychological difficulties, that is a huge and important step forward.
If you've seen the movie, what did you think? If you haven't see it yet, what are your initial reactions to the media buzz? Are you encouraged? Do you have any concerns?