The Superbad actor is gearing up for a busy autumn festival season, but we won’t see him on the press tour.
Jonah Hill, known for films such as Superbad, 21 Jump Street and The Wolf of Wall Street, has published an open letter talking about his mental health. First published by Deadline, the letter details the actor’s current struggles with anxiety as he gets ready to release his second directorial effort, documentary Stutz, into the world.
“Through this journey of self-discovery within the film, I have come to the understanding that I have spent nearly 20 years experiencing anxiety attacks, which are exacerbated by media appearances and public facing events,” the actor candidly wrote in the letter.
The IMDb synopsis for Stutz reads: “Follow Hill and his therapist as he has candid discussions of mental health and the progressively worsening anxiety attacks related to movie promotion that have turned his dream job into a nightmare.” It seems that art does imitate life; this is Hill’s most painful and personal project yet.
While it used to be a taboo subject, talking about mental health and encouraging conversations about it through art has become, if not easier, at least more acceptable. The latest season of Stranger Things, which also tackled mental health head on, and the recent news of Ezra Miller seeking treatment have raised our collective awareness of the potentially debilitating nature of mental health issues.
Hill also has the Netflix romantic comedy You People releasing later this year, so has his plate stacked full with upcoming releases. Hill also mentions in the letter that Stutz will premiere this fall at film festivals, which would have meant several appearances as well as interviews and other events by him all over the country and, likely, the world.
“I can’t wait to share it with audiences around the world in the hope that it will help those struggling. However, you won’t see me out there promoting this film, or any of my upcoming films, while I take this important step to protect myself. If I made myself sicker by going out there and promoting it, I wouldn’t be acting true to myself or to the film,” Hill continued in the letter.