As I’m sure you will agree, mental health is a topic often swept under the rug. If left untreated, mental health disorders can form severe emotional, behavioral, and physical health problems. Behind the Mask raises public awareness about mental health conditions in the African American community and debunks the associative stigmas that prevent sufferers from seeking or accepting therapy. Through education and transparent testimonies, Behind the Mask will surely start a dialogue long overdue.
“Behind The Mask: My Naked Truth” is a feature film documentary produced by national best-selling author, N’Tyse, CEO of A Million Visions Productions and award-winning director Arthur Muhammad of “Carter High”, (starring Charles Dutton, Vivica Fox, Pooch Hall, David Banner, …) Joining us is the National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI) ambassador and licensed therapist, Miss Elise Banks, student and staff psychologist (Southern Methodist University) Dr. Abel Tomatis, and Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, along with a host of other guests. “Behind the Mask: My Naked Truth” is an educational documentary which examines the proximal mechanisms in which stigmas are formulated. It also serves as a vehicle to provide those living with the condition, a means to communicate their lived realities to the masses―ultimately shedding light on the pain and the needs of those suffering in silence.
1 in 5 adults suffers from a mental health condition such as depression, bipolar, anxiety, and schizophrenia. According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, African Americans are 20% more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population. When we examine the statistics and realize how ethnicity, socioeconomic status, environmental factors, stigma, and other barriers play a role in one’s access to traditional treatment or willingness to seek therapy, it appears to be an injustice. We hope to quell the cycle of cultural taboos and reach out in both local and global communities to break the strongholds of paralyzing stigmas. If we can reach but one, and help them break free from the painful, cultural, and generational cycle of mentality that marks seeking help―taboo, it will make a difference.
This timely film asks very poignant questions that will ignite a discussion long overdue; some of which are:
- What is the crux of the problem?
- How can we break the cycle of shame stemming from the need for intervention?
- Can we convince prayer warriors that belief in therapeutic treatment is no reflection on their personal and intimate relationship with God, nor is it indicative of their lack of faith?
- How is mental illness affecting our loved ones and community?
- How are we coping in the workplace?
This film will also be accompanied by a celebrity-driven public service announcement, (PSA) in an effort to draw out those less inclined to come forth, but may with encouragement from the familiar face of a celeb willing to use their platform to quell this stigma.