If Drake had his ways, Jimmy Brooks would’ve had an entirely different ending to Degrassi. According to a writer of the drama for teens The rapper named Aubrey Drake Graham, threatened to end the show in the event that his character was still in a wheelchair following the fifth season.
“There there was an email coming from an attorney firm in Toronto that came from Aubrey. It was a strange letter which read, ‘Aubrey Graham is not going to be back in Degrassi the sixth season with Jimmy Brooks unless his injury is treated and he’s out of his wheelchair. I told him”Get him to this location and get him down here,'” James Hurst told the AV Club in a cast roundtable released this Thursday on October 14 in celebration of Degrassi Its Twentyth Anniversary. “He arrived and said”What’s that was that letter? I’m not aware of the letter. I replied”All right, I can understand. What do you think regarding the wheelchair? He said, ‘All my friends from the rap game think they’re soft because I’m in wheelchair. Then I said”Well you should tell your friends in the game of rap that they got shot. How much more difficult can you become? You’ve been shot and you’re now in the wheelchair. The man said”Yeah that’s right, yeah. He was gracious and humble about it all. He quickly retreated.”
Drake’s Jimmy was paralyzed following an attack at school in season four of the Canadian series.
“I was very passionate about it, and I said, ‘Aubrey, there’s some kid somewhere in a wheelchair, who’s completely ignored, who’s never on television, never gets represented,'” Hurst continued. “‘I want you to portray this person. You’re the coolest child on the show and you’re able to affirm that you don’t have anything wrong with having wheelchair.'”
The Grammy winner appeared in the beginning of the first seven episodes of Degrassi: The Next Generation. The last time he was on screen was in the episode of season 8 in the year 2008.
Lauren Collins, who played Paige Michalchuk on the show in Thursday’s report, said she said that Drake “struggled” physically “with having to all of a sudden do everything confined to a chair.” She said, “That was really hard for Drake. I certainly have some images of him falling off the chair on top of him and falling off the ramps made of plywood that they’d built specifically for him.”
Shane Kippel (Spinner Mason) said it’s “apprehension of having your character confined to a wheelchair, or even not really feeling like it’s right to be portraying someone who is confined to a wheelchair if you’re fully abled yourself.”
Collins said, “I don’t want to speak for anyone, but I think [Aubrey] probably struggled with the idea that he was one of two Black characters on the show, and that he was the one who was winding up shot and in a wheelchair, which obviously is part of a much larger conversation.”
When Drake struggled to act in chair, the character struggled too.
“There were always discussion about ‘Is there a procedure that Jimmy could undergo? Is there a way to get out of this problem?'” Stefan Brogren, who was the character Snake Simpson and directed several episodes, told. “The idea was discussed lots. Then we saw him get up standing up and moving around around with crutches.”
Drake invited the 20 former Degrassi co-stars to appear in the official music video of his track “I’m Upset,” bringing them back to the setting in the fictional school.
“It was the reunion we’ve always wanted, and we were thrilled to do it with our old friend,” Collins said to Variety in the moment. “Thank you, Aubrey, and thank you to the unbelievably dedicated fans of our show.”
DailyGossip has contact with Drake’s team for a response.
Via US Magazine