Alex Astrella

The director of his story with autism

Alex Astrella's Autism Speaks Champion of Change headshot

Alex’s journey with autism began with a diagnosis at the age of two in Los Angeles, California, when Alex's parents were told that he was not likely to graduate high school or live independently. At 28, Alex is a documentary filmmaker and the founder of Blu Star Productions. His story is a testament to the power of determination and the ability to turn obstacles into opportunities.

From a young age, Alex faced challenges and stigmas associated with his diagnosis, from societal misunderstandings to personal struggles with self-regulation. Despite these hurdles, his parents' support and early interventions, including Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) treatment, laid the foundation for his ultimate ability to understand, accept and embrace his autism diagnosis.

As Alex navigated high school and college, he found strength in his unique perspective and experiences. Fueled by a passion for filmmaking ignited during childhood trips to the movie theater with his mother, Alex discovered his calling in storytelling and documentary filmmaking.

In 2022, Alex founded Blu Star Productions, channeling his love for film into a platform that creates opportunities for artists across the disability spectrum. His documentaries, such as "Trial by Fire" and "Underdogs," explore the lives of incarcerated individuals, offering a compassionate lens into their stories. Through his latest project, "Free Play," Alex celebrates inclusivity and the transformative power of play.

Beyond his achievements in the world of film, Alex holds a master's degree in special education, a field where he seamlessly blends his personal and professional experiences. His study of special education, insights into the ABA space and dedication to giving back to the autism community serve as the foundation of his work.

As an Autism Speaks Champion of Change, Alex is driven by the desire to empower others to embrace their uniqueness and pursue their dreams fearlessly.