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Success Stories Within The IDD Community: RJ Mitte

If you have ever seen the television show Breaking Bad, you may be familiar with the character Walter “Flynn” White Jr. White was played by the actor RJ Mitte. Mitte is an American actor who lives with cerebral palsy. 

Early Life:

Roy Frank “RJ” Mitte III was born on August 21, 1992, in Jackson, Mississippi. When he was born, he was not breathing. This resulted in permanent brain damage. He was adopted by Roy Frank Mitte Jr. and Dyna Mitte. At the age of 3, he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. His doctors put his legs in casts in order to straighten them. Mitte spent most of his childhood using crutches and wearing leg braces. By the time he was a teenager, his body had developed the strength to not need these devices! When he was 14, he moved with his mother and his younger sister to Los Angeles. This is where his career as an actor started to blossom.

Career Success:

Mitte is most famously known for his role in Breaking Bad, but he has held several other roles in various television series. In 2007, he played a variety of extras, including “School Jock,” on the television show Hannah Montana. These roles piqued his interest in film and he began taking acting lessons. Shortly after this, in 2008, Mitte was offered the role of Walter “Flynn” White Jr. on the television series Breaking Bad. He acted on this show until 2013. He has also appeared in various short films and music videos.

Mitte has received several awards for his performances and his activism work. In 2013, he received the SAG-AFTRA Harold Russell Award for his role as Walter “Flynn” White Jr. on the television series Breaking Bad. The Screen Actors Guild named him as an advocate for actors with disabilities. Mitte is also a supporter of “Inclusion in the Arts and Media of Performers with Disabilities,” which aids actors with disabilities with getting jobs. He also has an award named after him – the RJ Mitte Diversity Award. 

Mitte is an active spokesperson for people with disabilities, specifically cerebral palsy. In fact, he is a celebrity ambassador for United Cerebral Palsy. He has spoken several times about growing up with cerebral palsy and the challenges that he overcame. 

“People with CP [cerebal palsy] overcome hurdles every day. One thing I’ve learned from my disability is that when there is an obstacle, you adapt and grow. You can’t let that obstacle break you down and discourage you.”

RJ Mitte

Current Day:

Today, RJ Mitte is still performing in various productions and continuing his activism work. Most recently, in 2019, he portrayed the character of Leif in the television series Now Apocalypse

Be sure to check out our previous success story featuring Susan Boyle and a similar success story featuring Daniel Radcliffe!

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RJ_Mitte

https://www.imdb.com/name/nm2666409/bio

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/magazine-31923337

https://www.brainandlife.org/articles/after-the-role-of-a-lifetime-breaking-bads-rj-mitte/

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