By Luke Voogt

A new Geelong film starring local actors is throwing stereotypes away in its portrayal of people with a disability.
Jeremy the Dud, which airs on 17 October, is the story a man “without specialty” living in an alternate universe where disability is the norm.
Corio actor Chris Van Ingen described playing a “real prick of boss” in the film as a role he had been waiting for.
“Everything I’ve played so far is the poor guy in the wheelchair that needs help,” he said.
“The thing I loved about the film is it turns stereotypes on its head. There are nice guys in wheelchairs and nasty guys in wheelchairs.”
Many people thought Van Ingen’s cerebral palsy would prevent him from chasing his acting dream, he said.
The film’s treatment of “normal” Jeremy as a “dud” was a fun way of getting people to throw away such stereotypes, he added.
“That’s what I’ve always tried to do throughout my whole life – not just in my acting.”
Geelong actress Chloe Hayden joined Van Ingen as Heidi, the film’s “voice of reason”.
“She’s the one questioning why people are treating Jeremy the way they are treating him,” Hayden said.
“They treat him like he’s unable to talk for himself and fend for himself.”
Hayden said the idea of turning stereotypes upside down “spoke” to her and that she enjoyed working alongside the film’s unique cast.
“I don’t think you’d find another workplace or movie set with an atmosphere like that.”
Hayden, who has Asperger’s syndrome, has dreamed of being a professional actress since she was a little girl.
“I would say I’m one of the most emotionally-driven people you’ll ever meet,” she said.
Robot Army’s Ryan Chamley wrote and directed the satirical film after seeing prejudice first-hand.
“I have a sister with MS and seeing how people treat her, the assumptions they make, it’s pretty frustrating,” he said.
“Often even when they mean the best they’re still being incredibly rude.”
Chamley’s characters include a womanising amputee (played by paralympian Adam Bowes) and a horrible boss in a wheelchair.
He hoped reversing the stereotypes would help people rethink their behaviours.
“A big one is talking about (people with a disability) while they’re there,” he said.
“I think people have an idea of how they should be around people with a disability without consulting them about it.”
Karingal St Laurence commissioned the film and the organisation’s Ben Flynn said it “brought the idea to life” to create opportunities for its clients.
“We’re just stoked we’ve been able to have been part of something that’s been pretty awesome.”

Comments are closed.

Your first stop before buying a home. View the whole picture.

More News

Police are searching for missing Geelong man Lachlan Dewar, who disappeared over the weekend. The 34-year-old was with his family ...

A Norlane church is holding a Neighbour Day to search for a “community purpose” for a recently freed-up building ...

Jess Connell’s tree-climbing obsession as a child growing up in Albury-Wodonga led her to join the circus aged 14. “My ...

A Geelong-led police operation targeting about 60 Hells Angels visiting Lorne this weekend has drawn a backlash online. Social media users ...

Council’s plans for bike paths in Belmont’s High Street are sexist, ageist and elitist, according to a Grovedale ...

Lara goat farm objectors have raised concerns about links between the proponent and local scientists who have described disease risks ...

Latest Sport

Local Cricket, by Jim Timberlake Geelong Cricket Club finds itself in finals action for the first time since 2012 after a ...

North Geelong Warriors finds itself at the top of the NPL2 ladder after last weekend’s 2-1 victory over promotion ...

On the Bite, by Chris Pitman Anglers only had to venture down to Geelong’s waterfront to get stuck into ...


Swords will clash, local Celts will don kilts and bagpipes will ring out across the fields of Corio for the ...

Some of Australia’s finest historic boats will feature at a community event on Geelong’s waterfront over the long ...

Ocean Grove’s dog-friendly outdoor cinema returns on Saturday with organisers expecting about 100 pooches and 500 human companions. After putting ...