What The Film Is AboutMental: A Six Film is a feature film complied of six shorts. Each short visualizes the day in the life of six different young adults. Each character is unique in their own way. They all come from different walks of life such as cultures, countries, and social class. Despite their different traits, they all have one thing in common: difficulty accepting their sickness, acknowledging the root of the cause, and gaining the courage to tackle it.
Sean Parker, a Black-American man, struggles with Alcoholism and denies that he has a problem. His actions cause a strain on interpersonal relationships and violence in his romantic relationship with his supportive girlfriend, Aria. A tragedy reminds Sean that he has become the man he vowed he'd never be, his father.
Kamal Johnson is a Jamaican-American man with schizophrenia. Kamal's mother, a Jamaican, heavy in her Christian faith, abandoned him and pitted him and his illness against their religion. This causes Kamal resent his mother and question God and Christianity. Kamal must also learn how to separate what's real and what's not, as he battles with his voices.
Emmanuel Johnson comes from Haiti. He suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of the earthquake in 2010. Emmanuel moves to the United States with his father and begins having nightmares and flashbacks. When suggested to seek help by his good friend, Sasha, Emmanuel becomes defensive and thinks it's foolish. He believes that he just needs to be involved with his faith, which would solve his troubles. Emmanuel begins to spiral into a manic frenzy, causing a traumatic accident.
Jada Fields is a Jamaican-American, woman who is a victim of sexual abuse. Jada is the oldest of four and comes from a Jamaican household. Her mother is the sole provider, as her stepfather doesn't work, which causes distraction to Jada's needs. Jada yearns for love and attention of her mother, who has discarded Jada’s abuse and emotional turmoil. Jada must learn to forgive and accept the mother she has.
Cherie Saint Louis is a Haitian-American woman suffering from bipolar disorder. Cherie is blind to her disease and thinks her siblings are overreacting. When Cherie meets Mike, a maintenance worker on her college campus, her extreme and dramatic behavior become apparent to those around her. She invites Mike to what she calls 'a day of fun'. Mike accepts, but later regrets his decision. Mike is dragged into a potentially dangerous, family intervention – all on a first date.
Sheyna McCould is a Black-American woman, diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Her OCD causes her to obsess over control and one night, that control was stolen from her when she was sexually assaulted. Through this trauma, Sheyna then suffers from PTSD and is afraid to step outside of her four walls. Her fear and struggles create tension between her and her younger sister, Tasha, who overshadowed by her sister’s illness in the eyes of their parents. Sheyna struggles to realize she wasn’t the only one affected.
What We Hope To PortrayWe believe this film is very important to the Black and Caribbean community. Many times, in our culture, mental health goes unnoticed within children who grow up to be lost adults. Religion plays a huge part in the way it is handled. Some believe that being more involved in church or in your faith will cure all ailments. Religion can sometimes be used as a way of shaming or ignoring a physical, chemical or emotional issue.
As a Jamaican-American woman, who's depression went unnoticed, I am very passionate about this film. I believe it can help our community gain support and break the stigma. We want to be able to show our community that mental health is real. To show those suffering in silence that it is okay ask for guidance. We want to encourage those who have friends or family members to be the support they need, as mental health doesn't only affect those diagnosed, but it affects loved ones as well.
A lot of times when we hear mental illness and think about the person diagnosed and we tend to lose focus on the family or those around them. Mental health affects all. Learning to acknowledge and comfort the brother, sister, best friend, parent or co-worker who is affected by or dealing with a mental illness is what this film is about. We want to show that it is okay to be someone's crutch and to open up to others. You may never know how much your empathy can brighten someone’s day and change their life. We want people to know that they can save and encourage lives.
Why We Need Your Help
To execute this film as artistically and fluidly as possible, we need to raise funds. We have extensively casted many wonderful talent and have a great vision for this cinematography of this motion picture. Funds would be used for the following:
- Lighting Kit - To properly light the set and actors. We want to be able to properly white balance and have high quality and impeccable cinematography.
- Shoulder Rig - To help with the camera stabilization for our shots that would be in motion.
- Camera Slider - For better transitions and more dynamic panning for dramatic scenes.
- On-Camera HDMI Monitor - As we will be filming on a Canon 70D, we would need an external monitor for our Director and Director of Photography so that the could get an accurate depiction of the shot.
- 35mm & 85mm Prime Lens- For good, crisp wide shots and close ups. Prime lens gives a dramatic deep depth of field and also allows in more light.
- Boom Mic Stand/Pole and Mic Blimp - Stabilization for sound. We want to give our audience the best sound quality as possible. We are working with a Audio Technica AT875R Shot Gun Condenser mic and Tascam DR-40 Recorder. We will be filming outside scenes so we want it to be as crisp as possible.
- Film Insurance - Certificate of Insurance allows us to gain a permit and extensive use of allowed set locations without restrictions or time constraints. (such as a mental health facility).
- Location Fees - As some of the scenes are set in homes, we would like to rent out homes/apartments that imitates the script.
- Props/Art Supplies - we plan to shoot in college dorms, apartments, homes, and a mental institute therefore we will need to purchase the proper props and supplies for set design.
- Any other miscellaneous, unexpected equipment/expenses we may need.
As we are getting to the final stages of preproduction, we project production time to be from November 2016 to January 2017 and premier in Spring 2017.
Who's Behind The Film
Our film consists of a 13 Women of Color who has had their own personal battle with mental illness or have had to be the support of a friend or family member.
A sufferer of major depression, OCD, and anxiety. Jheanelle has always loved the art of storytelling and advocates for those suffering with a mental illness to seek help and comfort. Many times before, Jheanelle has thought about taking her own life due to hardship of depression from childhood until adulthood; but art, film, and her son, Tahj, gives her purpose and a reason to live. Jheanelle is currently receiving her bachelor's at Miami Dade College in Film Production.
A passionate writer who enjoys telling complex and emotional stories, Annabelle has had some experience with depression and relates to the emotional battles of the characters. She is a graduate of the University of Florida with a degree in Journalism and an Alumna of Miami Dade College where she studied Film Production..
Shanice fell in love with the arts and writing at a young age and has always used it as an outlet to express herself. Shanice identifies and relates to mental illness, experiencing both depression and anxiety in her lifetime. Shanice is a graduate from the University of Florida, where she studied Journalism with a concentration in Broadcast Production.
This avid writer developed her love for storytelling from her late father - also a writer. After his passing, Nekala sought grief counseling and along the way met friends who also suffered from mental distress. She decided to use her talents to pay homage to her father, and help others. Nekala is a graduate of Florida A&M University, where she studied Journalism.
Kristian Hilbert, Actress, Writer, Producer. Kristian is a talented actress and aspiring filmmaker who enjoys writing psychological thrillers. Kristian has also suffered through depression and anxiety; she has also had her share of postpartum depression as she is a new mom to her beautiful, 10-month-old son, Taylor. Kristian is currently studying history at SNHU.
Kristi has had immediate family members with bipolar disorder, which influenced her childhood. She has experienced depression in her own adult life, after being diagnosed with Crohn's Disease. She has always had a love of arts, in general, and wants to share that, along with her testimony to spread awareness and help others. Kristi is a graduate of Florida International University in Psychology and Criminal Justice.
Formally diagnosed with bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and (mild) PTSD, Danielle once believed that she could never have a fulfilling and high-functioning adulthood. Being a part of something larger than herself, that brings awareness of the suffering done in silence, is giving her journey with mental illness a purpose. Danielle is a graduate of University of Maryland University College in Finance.
Experience with depression and anxiety, Lindsay has always been a storyteller from a young age. From writing about real life issues to creating the most elaborate tales. Lindsay has family members and friends who also deal with mental health issues. Her aim in life is to bring awareness and tell the untold stories. Lindsay attended Full Sail University for film and make up.
Cassandra is a hospitality professional and a supporter of women in film and arts. She also has suffered from depression, anxiety, and can relate to certain characters in the storyline due cultural background and experiences. Cassandra is attending Florida International University for Hospitality Management.
Noelle is an online marketing guru and skilled graphic designer. She is also a blogger, motivational speaker, and activist for survivors of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. Noelle is a graduate from Atlantic Technical Center with a degree in Digital/Multimedia and Information Resources Design.
Amanda is an aspiring actress and an educator. She feels it is her duty to care to the needs of children of all kinds. Very early, she learned that all children are made differently and was introduced to many forms of mental illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia in her field. Her mission is to bring awareness to those who may not know, are curious or want to learn. Amanda is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University with a degree in Education.
Treyonna is a talented fashion blogger and stylist who enjoys art and meaningful films. Treyonna has also experienced depression, after being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. She wanted to be a part of a project that brings awareness and comfort. Treyonna is a graduate of Florida A&M University, in Business Administration, and LIM College, with an MBA in Entrepreneurship & Management.
Kerene is an advocate for the well being of the Black community. As a blogger, she shares stories tailored for Black culture, Black history, and Black art. She hopes for this film to bring attention to such a complex and unexpressed issue in the Black community. Kerene graduated from Florida A&M University, with a degree in Public Relations and a concentration in Religion and History. She also has an Associate's in Business.
Jessica is an avid lover of film and TV created by women. She also has had close experience with those with mental illnesses, being the support and solace they needed. Jessica is a graduate of the University of Florida for Business and is currently attending Florida Atlantic University for her second Bachelor's in Finance.
Where You Can Find Us
We will be recording our filmmaking process to get fans and supporters more involved! Follow us on these social media sites!
Take a look at the director's personal experience with depression and how she coped.
Risks and challenges
We live in a world where Murphy's Law exists, "anything that can go wrong, will go wrong." We are diligently working during this first stage to make sure the least wrong can happen. We are prepared for the inevitable, the spontaneous, and the chaos. Some major risks will be securing certain locations like the mental health facility located in our area. However, if the location is not feasible, we are prepared to manipulate other locations and design a set to mirror the image of the institution.
Other risks are any technical difficulties we may have with camera, but again we have many other resources and plans to execute if that problem persists.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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