Ian Michael Smith (born May 5, 1987) is an American actor, known for his starring role in Simon Birch. His short physical stature (3\1\") is a result of Morquio syndrome , a rare enzymatic disorder affecting the circulatory, muscular and skeletal systems. A hospital worker in the Chicago area had approached the parents of young Ian Smith about his auditioning for the leading role in a soon-to-be-filmed motion picture. Like Smith, the film\s hero is afflicted with Morquio Syndrome. The Smiths were concerned about exploitation but after reading the novel on which the film was based agreed to allow their son to audition. Although he eventually lost out on that role (the film was The Mighty and Kieran Culkin landed the part), Smith was recommended for another role in a film based on a novel. This time, his audition tape won over the director and the novice was hired to essay the title
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