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12 Famous People With Autism (Celebrities, Actors, Musicians & More)

Here’s a list of the most famous people with autism spectrum disorder.

steven zauderer
Steven Zauderer
November 29, 2022
5
min read

Famous Celebrities With Autism

  1. Woody Allen
  2. Dan Aykroyd
  3. Marty Balin
  4. Susan Boyle
  5. Tim Burton
  6. Tony DeBlois
  7. Jerry Seinfeld
  8. Bill Gates
  9. Clay Marzo
  10. Bobby Fischer
  11. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
  12. Emily Dickinson

1. Woody Allen

woody allen

Although he's never publicly come out and stated that he has ASD, Woody Allen, multiple Oscar winner and film director, has exhibited behavior that experts find synonymous with autism.

He's known for his witty, quirky, and appealing personality.

However, Allen has stated that he suffers from neuroticism and has many neurotic habits.

He avoids things like elevators whenever he can, dislikes tunnels, and has peculiar showering habits.

2. Dan Aykroyd

dan aykroyd
Source: Wikipedia.org

When Dan Aykroyd was a child, he was kicked out of several schools before others close to him found out that he suffers from a mild case of Asperger's.

After he was diagnosed, Aykroyd has been quite public with it.

Because of this, he's become one of the most famous contemporary faces of autism in the entertainment industry.

The Oscar-nominated writer and actor have professed that his Asperger's factored into his character development in several movies, such as the classic 1984 film Ghostbusters.

3. Marty Balin

One of the founders of the psychedelic rock group Jefferson Airplane, which later changed its moniker to Jefferson Starship, Marty Balin was diagnosed with mild autism later as an adult.

marty balin
Source: NPR.org

Although not a big name in current musical lineups, he stays committed to advocating for people that are on the spectrum.

He has created music highlighting the struggles that people with autism face, becoming a well-known figure in music circles of other musicians inspired by his advocacy.

4. Susan Boyle

For fans of Britain's Got Talent, Susan Boyle would be easily recognizable.

susan boyle

She's often touted as having a great personality and is charming to be around.

Susan is from Scotland, where she later became a multi-million-selling musician.

She was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, educating herself on the disorder and becoming vocal about the impact it has made on her life and career.

5. Tim Burton

tim burton

Tim Burton has starred in many classic Hollywood films such as Alice in Wonderland, Edward Scissorhands, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Beetlejuice.

His partner, Helena Carter, has insinuated that Burton has autism, mentioning different personality traits that are characteristic of the star that is known to exist in adults with the disorder.

Carter has also brought up things like Tim not responding verbally when in the middle of his work.

6. Tony DeBlois

Tony DeBlois is confirmed to have autism. On top of being born prematurely, he also suffers from blindness.

tony deblois

Playing the piano at a very early age, his family noticed his talents before he was old enough to begin school.

As a great musician, DeBlois has mastered the skill of nearly two dozen instruments.

Currently, he can play thousands of compositions from memory, no doubt a talent partially influenced by his autism.

He performs throughout the world, showing his appreciation for music from different cultures.

Successful People With Autism

7. Jerry Seinfeld

jerry seinfeld

Today, Jerry Seinfeld's name is mentioned under the same breath as comedic legends like Bob Hope, Rodney Dangerfield, and Eddie Murphy.

Although he doesn't have an official diagnosis, he has professed to consider himself on the spectrum. Seinfeld has listed different issues that he's dealt with since he was a child, including his ability to think in literal terms.

His self-described case of mild Asperger's has been met with uncertainty by some of his detractors. Still, Seinfeld has no doubt shown characteristics in interviews that are well-known to people with autism.

8. Bill Gates

bill gates

Bill Gates is another contender for successful people that potentially have autism.

Some professionals believe it, though the Microsoft founder has never officially confirmed any diagnosis.

Some of Bill Gates's most convincing traits that are common with real autism cases are as follows:

  • His tendency to rock when in focus on different tasks
  • His speech, often characterized as monotonous and spoken in short sentences
  • Bill has shown a preference for sometimes avoiding eye contact with others he's engaged in direct conversation with

Famous Athletes With Autism

9. Clay Marzo

Clay Marzo is from Hawaii and is considered to be one of the faces of autism in the world of sports.

He was diagnosed as a child, though the diagnosis didn't change his ambitions to be a world-famous swimmer as he grew older.

clay marzo

He didn't let his symptoms get in his way, refusing to conform to labels and studying to become the best swimmer that he could be.

He won Hawaii's 200-meter Freestyle swimming competition when he was 10.

After that, Marzo chose surfing. He won numerous surfing tournaments in his youth, getting the attention of filmmakers and other sports figures.

At the NSSA, Marzo received a perfect score when participating at age 15.

10. Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer is thought to have Asperger's, paranoid schizophrenia, and OCD.

His temperament was described as incredibly serious, and he had issues forming friendships and socializing.

Regardless, he's thought of as one of the greatest chess players to ever play the game, becoming a grandmaster in his youth.

It was difficult for Boddy to remain calm in settings that weren't predictable or familiar to him, a common issue for people with autism.

Famous People In History With Autism

11. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Born in 1756, Mozart's name is known by people who aren't even familiar with the sounds of classical music.

He was considered a rock star of his time, a conductor and music genius that could play all manner of instruments.

He created some of the finest symphonies in classical music, first beginning to master the piano as a child.

Multiple historians have concluded that Mozart likely had autism due to his expressing well-known traits like repetition in movement, intense interest in specific objects, and a lack of sociability.

12. Emily Dickinson

emily dickinson

Born in 1830, Emily Dickinson was an unapologetic recluse, living most of her life in the house that she grew up in.

She wrote many famous poems that continue to be studied. Her habits were strict and tightly regimented.

Most of her work wouldn't become known until after she died in 1886.

Due to her odd habits and antisocial behavior, some historians characterize Dickinson as possibly autistic.

References

  1. https://behavioral-innovations.com/blog/20-famous-people-with-autism-spectrum-disorder-asd/
  2. https://www.appliedbehavioranalysisprograms.com/historys-30-most-inspiring-people-on-the-autism-spectrum/
  3. https://www.abadegreeprograms.net/successful-people-on-the-autism-spectrum/
steven zauderer

CEO of CrossRiverTherapy - a national ABA therapy company based in the USA.

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