On Sunday, April 23, Affleck was honored with the AutFest Awareness Award at the 1st Annual AutFest International Film Festival for his performance as an autistic CPA/hitman in the 2016 crime drama.
Affleck, who currently plays Batman on the big screen called his character in The Accountant and “autistic superhero” while adding, “I just wanted to honor the folks that helped me do the research for this movie and to let the folks who are dealing with this that, even if you have autism, you can do just about anything.”
“I wanted people to come away with the feeling that autistic people can do all sorts of exciting and special things,” he added.
The film fest was put on by The Autism Society to celebrate filmmaking contributions to autism awareness.
“AutFest’s mission is to celebrate films that promote autism awareness ‘from spectrum to screen’ and support autistic filmmakers and artists that have chosen film as their profession.
“We were touched by the overwhelming support of the filmmaking and autism communities and look forward to making this an annual event,” said AutFest founder and Autism Society’s VP of Development Matt Asner in a press release.
Asner’s father, Emmy-winning actor and autism advocate Ed Asner, also attended the festival and, in addition to presenting Affleck with his award, recognized Pixar filmmakers Pete Docter and Jonas Rivera with the AutFest Vanguard Award for their work on the 2015 animated feature film, Inside Out.
“Your identification with this particular film and this particular handicap, I’ll call it, is truly a marvel and a great contribution to society and the future of our children. We can’t thank you enough,” said Asner who worked with Docter and Rivera on 2009 Best Picture nominee Up.
“When the movie came out, we did hear from parents who have kids with autism that there was something about it that was visceral and tactile that explained things. We dramatized emotions and personified them,” said Rivera.
“One mother who had a son who was six or seven with autism wrote to us and said it was the first movie they saw that they felt they saw together as a family. And that really meant a lot to us,” he added.
Among the other movies receiving accolades was Po for Best Film. Good Celebrity attended the blue carpet premiere of the drama last year, interviewing the stars of the film as well as Mr. Asner, who was in attendance.
Here is a complete list of winners from the 1st Annual AutFest International Film Festival
Po, directed by John Asher (U.S.A.)
Swim Team, directed by Lara Stolman (U.S.A.)
The Buddy System, directed by William Harris and Megan Smith-Harris (U.S.A.)
Julian Feder, Po (U.S.A.)
The Accountant, directed by Gavin O’Connor (U.S.A.)
Best Autistic Filmmaker
Zac Davis, Even in Death (U.S.A.)
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(Photo Credit: Greg Doherty)