Drake almost left Degrassi: The Next Generation over his character Jimmy Brooks’ wheelchair

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Before he grew to become one of many largest musical artists of his technology, Drake started his showbiz profession as Jimmy Brooks within the Canadian TV collection Degrassi: The Next Generation… although he almost left the present early.

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The 34-year-old Toronto native performed Jimmy Brooks from the beginning of the present in 2001 earlier than leaving midway by the eighth season.

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Degrassi: The Next Generation writer-producer James Hurst revealed in a wide-ranging AV Club oral historical past of the present for its twentieth anniversary that the singer (actual title Aubrey Graham) almost left when Jimmy grew to become paralyzed and was sure to a wheelchair.

Almost left early: Before he became one of the biggest musical artists of his generation, Drake started his showbiz career as Jimmy Brooks in the Canadian TV series Degrassi: The Next Generation... though he almost left the show early
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Almost left early: Before he grew to become one of many largest musical artists of his technology, Drake started his showbiz profession as Jimmy Brooks within the Canadian TV collection Degrassi: The Next Generation… although he almost left the present early

Jimmy Brooks was shot within the again throughout a college capturing in a two-part episode in Season 4, which paralyzed him from the waist down.

While Drake did not take part within the oral historical past, his co-star Lauren Collins, who performed Paige Michalchuk on the present supplied her ideas on why he was uncomfortable being confined to a wheelchair.

‘I don’t wish to converse for anybody, however I feel [Aubrey] most likely struggled with the idea that he was considered one of two Black characters on the present, and that he was the one who was winding up shot and in a wheelchair, which clearly is a part of a a lot bigger dialog,’ Collins mentioned.

Another co-star, Shane Kippel, who performed Skinner, added, ‘”[There’s] the apprehension of getting your character confined to a wheelchair, and even probably not feeling prefer it’s proper to be portraying somebody who’s confined to a wheelchair if you happen to’re absolutely abled your self. But that pertains to [Aubrey] and the way he felt with that.’ 

Stefan Brogen, who performed Snake and likewise directed episodes of the present, mentioned there have been all the time conversations about a ‘surgical procedure’ that he might should ‘get him out of this.’

Writer-producer James Hurst revealed that Drake had a regulation agency in Toronto ship the present a letter, saying he wouldn’t return for Season 6 if he was in a wheelchair.

No wheelchair: Writer-producer James Hurst revealed that Drake had a law firm in Toronto send the show a letter, saying he would not return for Season 6 if he was in a wheelchair

No wheelchair: Writer-producer James Hurst revealed that Drake had a regulation agency in Toronto ship the present a letter, saying he wouldn’t return for Season 6 if he was in a wheelchair

‘There was a letter from a regulation agency in Toronto, and it was from Aubrey. It was an odd letter that mentioned, “Aubrey Graham is not going to return to season six as Jimmy Brooks until his harm is healed, and he’s out of the wheelchair.”‘

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However, when Hurst summoned Drake to him, he mentioned, ‘What letter? I do not know about that.’

Though, when Hurst requested him how he personally felt about the wheelchair, the then-up-and-coming rapper mentioned his piece. 

Personally: Though, when Hurst asked him how he personally felt about the wheelchair, the then-up-and-coming rapper said his piece

Personally: Though, when Hurst requested him how he personally felt about the wheelchair, the then-up-and-coming rapper mentioned his piece

‘He’s like, “All my associates within the rap recreation say I’m comfortable as a result of I’m in a wheelchair.” And I mentioned, “Well, inform your pals within the rap recreation that you just bought shot. How a lot more durable are you able to get? You bought shot, and also you’re in a wheelchair,”‘ Hurst defined to him.

‘He was like, “Yeah, yeah.” He was so good and apologetic about all the pieces. He immediately backed down,’ Hurst mentioned, whereas explaining why he thought it was essential that his character remained within the wheelchair.

‘I used to be very passionate about it, and I mentioned, “Aubrey, there’s some child someplace in a wheelchair, who’s utterly ignored, who’s by no means on tv, by no means will get represented.” I want you to signify this particular person. You’re the best child on the present, and you may say there’s nothing improper with being in a wheelchair,”‘ Hurst defined.

Drake’s Jimmy Brooks remained within the wheelchair for the rest of his time on the present, although he underwent stem cell surgical procedure in Season 7 and was seen strolling on crutches within the Season 7 finale earlier than leaving the present after a two-part Season 8 episode.

Drake launched his first studio album Thank Me Later in 2010, simply two years after he left the collection, which started a exceptional run.

He was named Billboard’s Artist of the Decade on the 2021 Billboard Music Awards after a decade the place he offered over 200 million data worldwide.

Artist of the Decade: He was named Billboard's Artist of the Decade at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards after a decade where he sold over 200 million records worldwide

Artist of the Decade: He was named Billboard’s Artist of the Decade on the 2021 Billboard Music Awards after a decade the place he offered over 200 million data worldwide

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