Disability Day: What Bollywood Always Gets Wrong About the Differently Abled

POV

Disability Day: What Bollywood Always Gets Wrong About the Differently Abled

Illustration: Arati Gujar

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n John Krasinski’s 2018 post-apocalyptic masterpiece A Quiet Place, the world is ravaged by monsters with ultra-sensitive hearing, forcing a family of four to go into semi-permanent hiding. While three members of the family are able-bodied, the fourth member, Regan, the teenage daughter is actually deaf. What’s surprising is that viewers don’t realise this until much later when Lee Abbott, Regan’s father uses sign language to communicate with her.

Regan’s deafness makes for an efficient survival tactic in the film but her character doesn’t exist in a vacuum, written simply to garner sympathy points. A Quiet Place gives Regan an equal footing in the process, never fetishising her disability. What’s even more inspiring is that Krasinski went to great lengths to ensure that the part of Regan went to an actual deaf actor.

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