Celebrities descended on Washington D.C. for a mental health roundtable with the White House Office of Public Engagement and Domestic Policy Council.
Alexandra Daddario, Kal Penn and were just a few of the Hollywood stars who attended the conversation about how to further include accurate mental health storylines in film and television series. The roundtable was a part of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris’ ongoing work to address the nationwide mental health crisis.
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The entertainment figures and administration officials discussed the opportunities for proactive mental health storylines, according to the White House. They also spoke about the lessons they’ve learned from previous campaigns for positive representation of mental health in entertainment and how to tackle depictions of it sensitively.
Other celebrities who attended the roundtable include Mädchen Amick, Freddie Highmore, Bianca Lawson, Lisa Ann Walter, David Shore, Milicent Shelton, Shawn Ryan and Joely Fisher. They were joined by professionals who specialize in psychology and mental health storytelling.
Fisher, who is Carrie Fisher’s half-sister and SAG-AFTRA’s secretary-treasurer, shared a post on the actors union’s Instagram following the discussion, elaborating on the importance of mental health for those in the entertainment industry.
“This strike we are conducting carries very real pain for everyone in the industry and beyond,” she wrote in the post and caption. “This sort of environment can cause acute mental and emotional challenges. As your union leaders, we see this, and we want to declare our support, whether you are a strike captain, a volunteer or any member — we see you, and we hear you. You are not alone.”
She also took a moment to share a personal anecdote about how mental health has always played a part in her life and hits especially close to home currently.
“My brilliant sister Carrie Fisher, who would’ve celebrated her 67th birthday today, wore her mental illness like a crown and scepter,” she wrote in the post. “When she departed, I took up the mantle of supporting humans who otherwise felt alone. What I didn’t know then was that a similar challenge and diagnosis would soon strike one of my children. The struggle is real.”
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