As for Stone's autism, Rao points out that it's an issue many American families are dealing with. "The statistics are staggering," he says. "They say that 1 in 100 boys across America currently have autism."
"The focus of our story is mostly on how it affects Jagger as a parent," Rao adds. "It's a very overwhelming and complicated emotional journey that a parent goes on when their child is diagnosed with autism. It starts with denial, embarrassment, confusion, sadness, and ultimately, acceptance. That's the arc we'll see Jagger go through over the course of this season."
Rao says it was really important to him to tell Robert and Jagger's stories "authentically, responsibly and realistically" -- so he's teamed up with two great organizations, the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance and Autism Speaks. For more information, visit their websites:
National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance http://www.nccra.org
Autism Speaks http://www.autismspeaks.com