The SchizAwards, the first ceremony to stop making films about schizophrenia

The SchizAwards, the first ceremony to stop making films about schizophrenia

On the occasion of the 21st edition of Schizophrenia Days (from March 16 to 23, 2024), the PositiveMinders association and The Good Company are launching the SchizAwards, the first ceremony which aims to change views on this psychological disorder, which affects 1 in 100 people.

Depression, bipolarity, phobias, schizophrenia, eating disorders… Mental disorders directly or indirectly concern all French people. According to the WHO, one in four French people will be affected by a mental disorder during their lifetime. Mental health is a real public health priority.

A campaign to denounce prejudices about schizophrenia

When it comes to schizophrenia, the discomfort persists… For the PositiveMinders association, behind Schizophrenia Days, too many lives are broken, even though solutions exist. On the occasion of this 2024 edition, PositiveMinders wishes to contribute to reestablishing the truth about this little-known disease: between misuse and stigmatization. With the aim of raising awareness among the general public, PositiveMinders is launching an offbeat campaign “the SchizAwards” which, in the form of a ceremony to stop making films about schizophrenia, deciphers the erroneous representations conveyed by cinema. With the participation of a jury made up of six experts (psychiatrists, people living with schizophrenia, relatives, directors and actors). Objects of inexhaustible storylines, psychological disorders inspire the authors of films and series, fueling the collective imagination. However, these representations are often very far from reality. More serious, they convey false ideas and maintain stigmatizing prejudices with serious consequences for the people concerned and those around them, as well as for mental health professionals. Indeed, in the collective unconscious, people living with schizophrenia remain associated with dangerousness, split personality and fear. Fiction is no stranger to this dramatic observation… From Black Swan to Fight Club via Split or even The Voices, the reality of this psychological disorder is still too often sacrificed for the benefit of the entertainment of the general public.

Schizophrenia, a disease of all prejudices

83% of French people and 70% of general practitioners think that people with schizophrenia are dangerous for others. 6/10 press articles use the term “schizophrenia” to designate something other than this pathology. However, advances in research have made it possible to identify numerous forms of schizophrenia. There is still much to learn about these complex disorders that affect thinking, emotions and behaviors. The exact causes of these diseases are still not known, but the consensus is that they are the result of a combination of genetic, neurobiological and environmental factors. The symptoms of schizophrenia vary from one form of the illness to another and evolve depending on the patient. They can include, among other things, hallucinations (sensory perceptions that are not real), delusions (false or irrational beliefs), thought disorders (difficulty organizing ideas) and behavioral disorders (social isolation, apathy, etc. .). Schizophrenia is usually diagnosed in young adults between the ages of 15 and 25. Before the first attack, there are warning signs, but they are often confused with a difficult adolescence, including by doctors. Due to lack of information, schizophrenia is therefore very often the victim of numerous misconceptions and prejudices. Notions far removed from the real situation of the vast majority of patients. By destigmatizing schizophrenia among a wide audience, PositiveMinders wishes to facilitate their early detection, a crucial issue for the implementation of personalized support allowing the patient’s lasting recovery.