Spring 2022

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64 SAGAFTRA | Spring 2022 | two different languages, sign language at home and soen nglish at school and in the outside world But CODAs are so tired of educating everyone, explaining to hearing people and [responding to] all their questions, and it's constant daily education. Now our movie can just speak for itself, and a lot of CODAs really feel seen and feel identied. I've seen my daughter begin to feel proud; I'm seeing the impact out there. SO, YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO WORK IN THE STAR WARS FRANCHISE. h, my od, love ar ar s so much, and ve loved it for so many years Keep in mind that … I can't hear. Zero. And back then, there was no captioning or subtitles. But I'll never forget sitting in the theater. It was a huge theater with a big red curtain, and so I actually thought I was going to see a dance or a musical with my family, and it was going to be really boring. e curtain opens. And I'm like, 'Oh, it's a movie. Okay, I wonder what it's going to be.' e best moment in my life, perhaps, is when this destroyer ies across this giant screen, and it was loud, I could feel the rumbling. I was 8 years old. I was freaking out. I had never seen anything like this in my life. ere's laser gun shots onscreen, there's just these wonderful costumes, these robots, these aliens. I'd never seen those types of monsters and aliens. It was extremely visual; it blew my mind. I told my parents, I wanted to see it again. So I ended up watching ar ar s 28 times in 1977. TELL US ABOUT YOUR WORK AS A SIGN LANGUAGE CONSULTANT ON THE MANDALORIAN. met roducer ave iloni e said, 'Thin aout when cowoys met ndians, and how they communicated with gesturing or sign language That's the andalorian communicating with the Tuscan aiders' I played around with some signs, and I sent him some rough examples, some options for Tuscan Raider sign language. I didn't want to use American Sign Language; I wanted to create a type of sign language for that desert landscape, for that Tuscan Raider culture. I would come up with option A, option B and option C, and I would send those over to Dave, and if he picked option B, we'd shoot an ASL reference and send it over. And I was telling myself, 'Why am I teaching two people these signs? Maybe they don't know I'm an actor.' So my manager called them and said, 'Hey, Troy is also an actor. Instead of Troy teaching sign language, he can just act.' ey didn't even know I was an actor. It wasn't like I begged them for the job, I was just glad that they asked me, and of course I was over the moon. I was [thinking] 'is is my dream come true. I get to work in ar ar s, and I get to wear a Tuscan Raider costume.' It's been great. What a wonderful experience. My dream was to join the ar ar s family. IN , YOU WROTE AND DIRECTED THE FILM NO ORDINARY HERO: THE SUPERDEAFY MOVIE. WOULD YOU BE INTERESTED IN DIRECTING MORE FILMS? When was growing u, wanted to direct was insired y Sielerg, and really wanted to ecome a director, ut realied that ollywood wasnt uite ready for a deaf director because of communication issues] . I would love to have a bit more experience. With Sup erDeaf y, it was such a rich experience. It was a challenge, because we only had 12 days of shooting. We had a lot of deaf and hearing actors all working together with four interpreters. Maybe you wonder how a deaf director works. It's just like a hearing director would use an ASL consultant. [A deaf director would use] a sound dialogue coach, so I can borrow the sound dialogue coach's ears and say, 'How is the dialogue? Is it at? Does it feel emotional?' And then they can put forward their notes, just like an ASL consultant can put forward notes on ASL onscreen, like a dialogue coach. I have a few ideas in mind; I would love to do something like eak y ri day, [in which] mother and daughter switch bodies, and the mom becomes the kid and the kid becomes the adult. I am imagining something like if it was a deaf and hearing person switching, and what it would be like to be hearing and what it would be like to be deaf. Something like that would be really great to turn the tables, and we would just need to nd someone to write it. WHAT PROJECTS DO YOU HAVE IN THE WORKS? We're discussing a project called ash ef or e e ang , and m ecited aout it ecause there are so many deaf roles ts based on a true story from the Oregon School for the eaf, where they won the state trac and field chamionshi I'll play the head coach. It's a large team and a lot of deaf opportunities, and that would be a big step forward. We had three deaf roles in DA , and this would have more than 10. I'm really hoping that we keep pushing the boundaries forward and give more opportunities to young deaf kids to show that we can do it. en there will be more diversity, more diverse storytelling and more freedom. From left, Amy Forsyth, Daniel Durant, Marlee Matlin and Troy Kotsur in CODA. APPLE T V

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