Wooden. And the end of my acting career. I was 17. The local rag review of my performance was harsh but that’s showbiz. An age when I was beginning to accept myself and my difference. A life-changing moment to stop wearing artificial legs. They were too restrictive and me was so much shorter. Method acting. No. Being a believable mystical creature from a faraway land was a climb too high.
I was surrounded by really talented disabled actors. One of my peers has been on TV a lot recently in relation to the #InfectedBloodInquiry. He has haemophilia and was infected at that time. His life took a path away from acting. Not by design but by catastrophic incompetence. Devastating sliding doors.
My acting memory was sparked by an article by filmmaker Jim Sheridan stating it is not right anymore for non-disabled actors to play disabled characters. He directed Daniel Day-Lewis in My Left Foot, and along with Rainman, they were cutting through films that changed my landscape and others. The films needed to be made. Both lead actors were brilliant. Today we need disabled actors to play these roles and other leading roles where the characters simply happen to have a disability. The review at 17 has ruled me out.
To a Dustin Hoffman Friday.