The inspiration began when California filmmaker/music producer Peter McEvilly made a music video for a senior class project with a special needs artist. The experience ignited a storm of inspirational fireworks, from which Everybody is a Star was born. McEvilly and music industry veteran Howard Sapper created this unique non-profit organization so special needs artists anywhere in the country could stand in the mainstream spotlight, via internet posting of professional-level music videos. Since its inception, the work of Everybody is a Star has opened doors for dancers, singers, disc-jockeys, concert pianists, audio-visual artists, playwrights and singer-songwriters—and all of them special needs artists.
Sapper arranged high-profile performances by special needs artists at professional sports events and festivals, experiences which melded these performers into a community of artists with ever-growing confidence and self-esteem.