Vine Street Pictures

Mother & Daughters' Journey Through Madness

    London (ots/PRNewswire) -

    - Out of the Shadow to Premiere on Psychiatry 24 x 7 Website

    - Award-Winning Film Offers Hope & Healing to Millions of Families Worldwide

    Out of the Shadow, Susan Smiley's award-winning documentary film, which offers a searing and captivating portrait of her mother Millie's lifelong struggle with schizophrenia and its shattering impact on her family, is now available to view worldwide on the Psychiatry 24x7 website  (

    More than 450 million people worldwide suffer from a mental illness[1]- a greater number than affected by cancer or diabetes. In Europe alone schizophrenia is estimated to affect 6.6 million people. Overall, this means that one in 100 people will suffer from schizophrenia at some time in their lives[2].

    "Schizophrenia affects families like mine and yours - not only the nameless homeless person on the street," says Susan Smiley, producer, director and writer of Out of the Shadow. "I want the film to impart the message that schizophrenia can be effectively managed when patients receive comprehensive psychosocial services, including safe and stable housing, family support and open access to proper treatment."

    Out of the Shadow illustrates the complexities of severe mental illness on individuals and their families whilst exposing some of the inadequacies of public mental health systems. Filmed over six years, Out of the Shadow uncovers one family's struggle, but reveals an international plight endured by families across the world. Tens of millions of people worldwide, and their families, are affected not only by schizophrenia but by the stigma, barriers to treatment and broken and fragmented mental health service delivery systems in many countries.

    Launching Out of the Shadow on Psychiatry 24x7 allows all those affected and touched by mental illness across the globe to gain a personal and invaluable insight into schizophrenia, and the website further offers them a wealth of educational information. Out of the Shadow has been aired on national television across the US and premiered at film festivals in the US, Canada and New Zealand, it is also available on DVD and has been translated into 6 languages. The film has already generated thousands of heart-felt and poignant e-mails from individuals whose families have been touched by mental illness.

    Susan Smiley's provocative and revealing new film is a powerful and poignant story of madness and dignity, shame and love. Hers was the picture-perfect suburban family: a beautiful mother with two smiling young daughters. But hidden beneath the surface was a dark and terrifying secret. Susan's mother Millie was descending into her own world filled with paranoia, rage, strange voices and outbursts of violence.

    Out of the Shadow is an emotional journey in which film maker Smiley explores a difficult, painful past in order to cross over to a more hopeful future. The film weaves probing interviews, home movie footage and family photos with recent candid footage to unravel this complex story.

    Out of the Shadow can be viewed by registering on


    [1] World Health Organisation Regional Office for Europe

    [2] Rethink Website - mental_illnesses_and_disorders/schizophrenia/index.html

    Notes to Editor:

    About Susan Smiley

    An award-winning documentary filmmaker, Susan Smiley is the producer, director and writer of Out of the Shadow. Susan has produced and directed documentaries for Discovery Channel, History Channel, Sci- Fi Channel, MTV and the Frontline series on PBS. In addition to the extensive public speaking and outreach Susan is now doing with Out of the Shadow, she is currently producing her next film that explores the criminalisation of mentally ill youths in Los Angeles County.

    The first public screening of Out of the Shadow in the EU is taking place in Belfast, on Wednesday 31 January at the Queens Film Theatre. The film is being aired as part of 'Movies in Mind'- a festival of film exploring cinema's depiction of mental illness.

    For full viewing of Out of the Shadow register on

    More information and a film clip can be found at

    Photos for Out of the Shadow are available online at

    More information about schizophrenia is available at

    Funding for this documentary has been provided in part by the David C. and Lura M. Lovell Foundation, Aetna Behavioral Health, Pfizer, Janssen L.P and Zellerbach Family Foundation.


    - Directed, produced and photographed by Susan Smiley.

    - Editors: Joel Plotch, Jonathan Oppenheim.

    - Co-Producer: Elizabeth Massie.

    - Composers: Hector H. Perez, B. Quincy Griffin.

    About Vine Street Pictures - Vine Street Pictures is a Los Angeles based boutique production company focused on producing documentaries about social issues in need of attention.

    About Psychiatry 24x7

    Out of the Shadow can be viewed by registering on

    Psychiatry 24x7, sponsored by Janssen-Cilag, offers a unique, personalized, round-the-clock online resource focused on psychiatry, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, ADHD and child psychiatry, depression, anxiety and substance abuse, with a mix of topical news, disease information, educational tools and interactive features aimed to patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals.

    Psychiatry 24x7 was launched in 2000, with an average of 8000 visitors per day.

ots Originaltext: Vine Street Pictures
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For further information, contact: Michael Fried, +1-(510)-677-2648

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