Turn on Open Captions for "Wonderstruck" for Deaf Moviegoers!
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What is Wonderstruck?
This October, Amazon Studios is releasing the movie Wonderstruck, which is based on the juvenile fiction novel by Brian Selznick. The movie has two parts -- a black-and-white "silent film" part with a Deaf character (played by a Deaf actor), and a color film part with a character who loses hearing in one ear. The Deaf actor, Millicent Simmonds, will be in the spotlight as the deaf community's latest example of #DeafTalent! See her in the (open captioned) trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeh-HfGdOEA
What are open captions?
Open captions, in movie theaters, are words that appear on-screen for dialogue, sound effects, and music. In contrast, there are closed captions, which are captions that appear on an individual captioning device and are "closed" to the moviegoer using it. Captioning devices only exist in the place of open captions on the off-chance that some hearing moviegoers do not want to accommodate deaf moviegoers with words on-screen as a matter of accessibility.
Why open captions for Wonderstruck?
Open captions are already available for movies from all six major studios, and even smaller distributors like Wonderstruck's Amazon Studios have them available. They just have to be turned on in movie theaters! Since Wonderstruck is a deaf-themed movie, it is absurd not to have open captions. These would make the movie immediately accessible for any deaf and hard of hearing moviegoer to simply walk in, sit down, and enjoy the show.
What can I do?
Sign this petition, share it with other deaf and hard of hearing people who like going to the movies, and share it with hearing allies as well! We welcome hearing moviegoers who support open captions and even enjoy having them. Contact Amazon Studios asking them to ensure open captions for Wonderstruck. The movie has a limited release on October 20th and will be in more theaters in November, so get in touch with your local movie theaters and their general managers to have them set up open captions for all screenings of Wonderstruck.
DC Deaf Moviegoers is a group for deaf and hard of hearing moviegoers in the Washington, DC area. Organizers for the group set up open captioned movie screenings on the behalf of its members. To find out more, check out its Facebook group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/dcdeafmoviegoers/
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