Talk about the irony of this DVD titled "What's Bugging Seth" produced by Eli Steele who himself is Deaf hired a hearing actor, Ross Thomas, to play as a Deaf person. What makes it more ironic is that Steele actually hired an actress, Amy Purdy who is a double amputee to play as an amputee person. What's going on? Don't tell me that it is hard to find talented Deaf actor since there are many Deaf people who use hearing aids, cochlear implants and have spoken English skills. What is wrong with them? I just don't get it.
In this film, presumably no signs are used which may explain why it is not a priority for Steele to hire a Deaf actor but he could have at least hired someone who is capable of speech using hearing aids or cochlear implants. Steele admitted that he struggled with his Deaf identity and attempted to put it away. He didn't want to be identified as a Deaf director and just wanted to show the world that a Deaf person can function like a hearing person.
What I find it interesting is that Thomas had to learn how to speak like a "hard-of-hearing" person and wear a fake cochlear implant before the production of the film so that he can develop a taste of character. He reported that he noticed how people treated him differently when he wore a fake implant and pretended his not-so-perfect speech. That's sad really.
One more last irony here about the quote by Steele:
"The ultimate irony that Seth discovers is that it is not until he finally accepts his deafness that he is truly free to be whatever he wants and to love whomever he wants. And it wasn’t until I embraced my deafness as an integral part of myself that I was able to make “What’s Bugging Seth,” and, in the process, establish myself as a filmmaker."
If that is the case, he could have hired a Deaf actor to prove his point. Now that he embraces his deafness, I just hope that he will come to mind to hire a Deaf actor next time when a Deaf character pops in.