Los Angeles, June 24 – Disney/Pixar’s newest film Luca has tackled several areas of inclusion – including one often not highlighted – disability. This film features characters who are sea monsters including Luca (Jacob Tremblay) and Alberto (Jack Dylan Grazer) who travel to land and meet a new human friend Giulia (Emily Berman). When Luca and Alberto meet Giulia’s father Massimo, viewers see that he only has one arm. When Luca asks him how it happened, he says in a scary voice, “A sea monster ate it.” After a beat, he reveals he was just kidding and that he was born like that. This is the only acknowledgment of his disability. It is refreshing to see a character with a disability like this and have it be just part of him and not a big plot point. It really hammers home the lesson of acceptance in this movie. The dad not having an arm at first made him really scary, but it is just a part of him that people don’t understand.
Ashley Eakin, a writer/director who was born with a limb difference, also agrees that Luca has handled this representation well. “Luca is a great example of how we can include representation of people with different bodies in all of our content. Too often the character with some type of disability or limb difference is the villain or scary. While Massimo is brash, he is also a talented chef and caring father. They even make light of the way he lost his limb with ultimately explaining it was just the way he came into the world.” [continue reading…]