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Webinar: Disability Portrayals on Screen Hit a Landmark High

Presented in Partnership with The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media

The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media’s CEO Madeline Di Nonno discussed new groundbreaking findings of characters with disabilities from this year’s See Jane 2020 Report.

Key Findings Relating to Disability:

  • Eight percent of family films in 2019 featured a lead with a disability – a historic high.
  • Characters with disabilities are more likely to be rescued in family films than other characters (34.3% compared with 20.6%).
  • Characters with disabilities are nearly twice as likely to die in family films as other characters (20.0% compared with 11.7%).
  • Characters with disabilities are more likely to be represented as hardworking, in management, in STEM occupations and as leaders than other characters.

Only 35.7 percent of working-age women with disabilities are employed in the U.S. compared to 72.8 percent of working-age women without disabilities. Thus, the last bullet on how people with disabilities are represented in the workplace is vitally important. After all, what people see on their screens influence how they feel – and act – toward people with disabilities.

Are you interested in presenting during one of these workshops? We would be delighted to give you a platform to share your knowledge. Email Lauren Appelbaum for more information: [email protected].


Madeline Di Nonno headshotMadeline Di Nonno is the Chief Executive Officer of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, and brings thirty years of executive leadership in the entertainment, non-profit, digital and consumer packaged goods industries. Di Nonno is an Executive Producer on the upcoming feature film This Changes Everything. Di Nonno serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors for the Television Academy Foundation. Di Nonno served as President of the Glass Lions Jury for Cannes Lions 2016.

Previously, Di Nonno served as President and CEO of On The Scene Productions. Prior to On The Scene, Di Nonno served in executive positions for Anchor Bay Entertainment/Starz Media.

As Executive Vice President and GM for Nielsen EDI, Di Nonno drove new digital product offerings, new business development and theatrical distribution and exhibition client management.

Previously, Di Nonno served as Senior Vice President, Marketing Alliances and Digital media at the Hallmark Channel, and launched the cable channel. Di Nonno served eight years at Universal Studios Home Video as Vice President, Strategic Marketing. Di Nonno began her career at ABC Television Network in corporate publicity

Di Nonno is a frequent speaker and has been featured in the The New York Times, Fast Company, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Forbes, Glamour, MediaWeek, The Guardian and Wired Magazine.

Meet the Author

Eric Ascher

Eric Ascher is the Communications Associate for RespectAbility. He is responsible for supporting RespectAbility’s Vice President, Communications in developing and implementing advocacy efforts and communications of various types. Ascher manages RespectAbility’s social media channels, website and emails; organizes and develops webinars; and supervises Communications Fellows.

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