'Intelligent Lives' film screening Thursday in Peabody

Naieer, one of three central figures in the documentary "Intelligent Lives," participates in an art class.

PEABODY — A documentary that sheds light on the continuing fight for inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities will be shown Thursday night at Northeast Arc's Peabody Black Box Theater. 

The film, called "Intelligent Lives," stars Micah, Naieer and Naomie, three young adults with intellectual disabilities who challenge perceptions of intelligence as they navigate high school, college and the workforce. Academy Award-winning actor and narrator Chris Cooper contextualizes the lives of these characters through the story of his son, Jesse, as the film unpacks the questionable track record of intelligence testing in the U.S. 

The screening is sponsored by Northeast Arc’s Family Resource Center and Bridgewell’s Family Support Center. Both organizations provide a range of resources and programs for people with disabilities and their families. 

New Hampshire-based filmmaker Dan Habib, producer, director and cinematographer of “Intelligent Lives,” will introduce the documentary.

“People with intellectual disabilities are the most segregated of all Americans,” said Habib, a filmmaker at the University of New Hampshire’s Institute on Disability, in a statement about his film. “Only 17% of students with intellectual disabilities are included in regular education; just 40% will graduate from high school. And of the 6.5 million Americans with intellectual disability, barely 15% are employed.”

The free screening starts at 5:30 p.m. at the theater, 22 Foster St., Peabody, and is open to the public. To reserve tickets, visit https://blackbox-intelligentlives.eventbrite.com or call 978-624-2333.



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