Dyslexia is a disorder that comes under the broader umbrella of developmental learning disabilities. There are many celebrities who have battled with this condition, and this article mentions some of them and their stories in brief.
Dyslexia is a developmental disorder characterized by difficulty in reading and spelling. Sometimes, even the mathematical ability of the person may be affected. This condition is separate and distinct from reading difficulties resulting from other causes. Around 5 – 17% of the US population is affected by this condition. However, for those who think that there is no life beyond this disorder, think again. Given below are some of the most famous people with dyslexia, which will inspire you to overcome it.
Who doesn’t know the actor who stole everyone’s heart in movies like Top Gun and Mission Impossible? Well, this charismatic actor from New York was diagnosed with dyslexia as a child. Tom Cruise says that he was abused as a child due to this, as his father came down very hard on him when he didn’t perform in school. Because of this, he went on record to say that his father was “a bully, a merchant of chaos.” Cruise also said, “I knew from being around my father that not everyone means me well.” However, the actor overcame all of this and more, and went on to star in some of the highest grossing movies in Hollywood. He is still one of the most sought-after actors ever.
Whoever has seen the handsome Will Turner from Pirates of the Caribbean movies won’t guess in a million years that Orlando Bloom suffers from dyslexia. This young Brit, despite showing signs of this reading disability early on in his childhood, still managed to not only get through King’s School, Canterbury and St. Edmund’s School in Canterbury, but even earned a scholarship later on to train at the British American Drama Academy. He went on to graduate from Guildhall School of Music and Drama and got his first big break when he played the role of Legolas in The Lord of the Rings movies. He then went on to achieve worldwide fame as Will Turner in the Pirates trilogy, which has grossed over USD 2.79 billion till date.
Sir Richard Branson
Everyone knows of the whimsical entrepreneur that is Sir Richard Branson, but very few people know that he is one of the most successful people to have overcome this condition and achieved great heights in life. Branson was diagnosed with mild dyslexia and had poor academic performance as a student, but managed to more than make up for this deficit by his ability to connect with people. His excellent communication and PR skills saw him figure in Forbes magazine’s 2009 List of Billionaires. Today, he owns over 360 companies under the umbrella of his brand Virgin, a feat that he achieved due to his hard work and grit.
Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci figures prominently in this list. This talented Italian was a painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, writer, botanist, and geologist. Phew! In fact, da Vinci has been described as the quintessential Renaissance man, and is said to be one of the greatest painters of all times. He is best known for his half-length portrait of a woman called Mona Lisa.
Other famous dyslexics include:
- Erin Brockovich
- Thomas Edison
- Patrick Dempsey
- Whoopi Goldberg
- Anthony Hopkins
- Keira Knightley
- Jay Leno
- Ozzy Osbourne
- Keanu Reeves
- Pablo Picasso
- Guy Ritchie
There are many other famous personalities who suffer from various other learning disabilities, like the Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe who suffers from dyspraxia. All said and done, after knowing about all these famous dyslexic people, surely you must have got inspired to realize that where there is a will, there is a way, and that nothing is impossible!