The much-loved show, The Simpsons, will feature a deaf voice actor for the first time in the show as John Autry II guest stars as a Monk who Lisa befriends.
Deaf actor John Autry II was pitched by episode writer Loni Steele Sosthand, to the show’s executive producers James L. Brooks and Al Jean.
“Jim and Al very much got on board and saw what a gem he was,” Steele Sosthand said.
Entitled “The Sound of Bleeding Gums,” the episode sees Lisa Simpson befriend Monk, the deaf son of her saxophonist mentor Bleeding Gums Murphy, as he wanted to get a cochlear implant.
Speaking about his role, Autry II said “It’s so incredible - it’s about hard of hearing and hearing characters coming together. It’s a part of history.”
Interestingly, many Simpsons fans will recall that the iconic yellow characters only have four fingers, however, Steele Sosthand was confident that featuring ASL could still be feasible.
“That was a little tricky, especially because the one thing we’re translating is Shakespeare,” she said. “But I think we pulled it off.”