Entertainment

Oscars 2021: ‘Crip Camp’ team’s appearance marks ‘tipping point’ for disabled people


Diversity is about so much more than skin color, as evidenced by the 2021 Oscars red carpet, which on Sunday welcomed three people using wheelchairs — one with a service dog.

The trio were part of the team behind the nominated documentary “Crip Camp,” which tells the story of Camp Jened, a summer retreat in the Catskills where, from 1951 to 1977, many young people with disabilities first experienced the joys of community.

“We’re on the red carpet! #Oscars,” the film’s official Twitter account said gleefully, tweeting out a photo showing the “Crip Camp” representatives, including nominated writer-directors James LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham.

“Sending hope & gratitude to my friends on the #CripCamp team today!,” tweeted “Crip Camp” writer David Radcliff, who has cerebral palsy, uses a wheelchair and is a member of the Writers Guild of America’s Committee for Writers With Disabilities.

“No matter what #Oscars bring, I hope this is a tipping point after which seeing disabled people at awards doesn’t seem so revolutionary. Thank you for all the work you’ve done & the doors you have helped to open.”

Radcliff tweeted that LeBrecht was the first person he’d ever seen using a mobility device at the Oscars, which he said he has watched nearly his entire life.

“Crip Camp” has won top documentary honors from 10 organizations, including the AARP Movies for Grownups Awards and the Film Independent Spirit Awards.

At the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, it was the audience award winner.




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