The photography series, Hollywood On The Spectrum, features both working actors, as well as up-and-coming talent hoping to break into Hollywood. It is a photographic portrait series featuring actors and musicians who are on the Spectrum. This project delves deeper than just the still-frame, by including interviews of the actors who discuss challenges & successes within the Hollywood strata.
Beth Dubber, originator and photographer of this project said, “Having worked as an on-set Photographer for over 15 years, I was compelled to create this photo series after working with a talented group of actors from The Miracle Project who were on the Autism Spectrum. As an ally, my hope is to leverage my talents and connections in the industry to continue to build awareness and help reframe the conversation around diverse casting in Hollywood, by offering a new visual platform for attention and hearing from the group in their own words.” www.bethdubber.com
Film and television have a profound ability to influence our lives, and one of the most powerful dimensions of this is the phrase “representation matters”. When someone from a historically underrepresented group sees themselves on screen, it can be transformational for both them and society. Until recently, representations of the spectrum of Autism were rare, and when such characters did appear, they were primarily played by neurotypical actors, for example, the most well known being the role of Dustin Hoffman in Rainman.
This project has been in the making since 2018 when Dubber met and worked with actors from The Miracle Project on the set of Netflix’s Atypical. She had her first test shoot in June 2019 where she tested a “Classic Hollywood” look, shot on film with her Hassleblad 500c.
From there, she decided to go in a different artistic direction in terms of lighting and switched to a “fine art” look, using ARRI Skypanels. The was able to execute 2 test shoots with 4 actors by Feb. 2020, and we all know what happened a few weeks later.
Sitting with this project for 2 years, Dubber decided to go with a final look that encompassed both the fine art & commercial worlds, both in which she is intertwined.
The photo shoot day #1 occurred on 2/27/22. On that day, there were 15 crew, 13 actors, 15 supportive friends & family, within a 12-hour day, and a month long pre-production, they managed to dress the 13 actors head-to-toe using the vast collection of Kiki Stash as well as complementing the wardrobe with newer pieces. They all went through full hair and make-up, then had a 15 minute photo session, followed by an interview.
It is important to hear their voices when it comes to lived experiences. Wanting to delve deeper than just the still frame, Dubber hired an EPK crew to document the talent’s experiences in their own words. Please look at the Interviews page on this website.