We’re in This Together! A Conversation with John Lawson, Actor & Filmmaker

This just in: an important message about COVID-19 from some incredible, multi-talented friends within the disability community. Thank you to filmmaker extraordinaire John Lawson for quickly spearheading this urgent public service project!

This video reminds us that we are all in this together…to self-isolate, stay at home, and do your part to stop the spread of this virus – especially because people with disabilities may be particularly vulnerable. Please share with your friends and help us save lives!

And, here’s a fun fact. The filmmaker and everyone you see in this PSA are active participants (and super spokespeople) of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge, including its founder/director, actor and Easterseals Southern California board member, Nic Novicki.

We’re thrilled to host John today for a brief Q&A about this awesome video:

Easterseals: What made you decide to do the PSA?

John: I actually saw a PSA that was done by a major network with some of their TV series regulars, but of course it didn’t include anyone with disabilities. In my own research and seeing information posted about COVID-19, I learned that seniors and some people with certain disabilities or compromised immune systems would be more at risk. Especially early on, with lack of testing available and reports of some people not realizing they could be carriers infecting others, I felt it important to help spread the word about self-isolation as a protection to the public.

Easterseals: In the climate of social distancing, how did you get all those celebrities to participate?John smiling at the camera

John: After being in the trenches for nearly 30 years as an advocate for people with disabilities, especially in film and television, I have worked with and become good friends with many actors of different levels of success. I just email or called everyone and asked them to participate. From New York to New Orleans to Los Angeles, they were all happy to help by filming at their respective homes to help spread the message. Everyone sent their videos to me and then I edited the PSA into its final version.

Easterseals: What do you hope the PSA accomplishes?

John: Hopefully the public will see familiar faces from television and film that they invite into their homes for various forms of entertainment and realize that they could possibly infect not only loved ones within their own family circle, but also those who may be more at risk because of age, disability or compromised immune system.

Easterseals: Anything else you’d like to add?

John: I am really pleased that this little 90 second video, brought together in just 48 hours is being so well received and watched around the world. As the US is now the epicenter in the full grips of this global pandemic, hopefully the public will take the message to heart and realize that “safer at home” has just as big an impact for others as it does for themselves.

Truly, we are all in this together.

 

Visit John’s IMDb page to learn more about his work or check out his many films for the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge.

We’re in this Together features: Danny WoodburnDaryl Chill Mitchell, Marilee Talkington, Sammi Haney’s DisabilityShirts.com, Blair Williamson, Diana Elizabeth Jordan Actor/Solo Performer-Speaker, FilmmakerPatrika DarboNic NovickiAngel GiuffriaRJ Mitte, Tobias Forrest, and Danny Gomez.


 

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