General project description: This project is a filmed adaptation of Robin Wildt Hansen’s ‘The World.’
The 80-minute narrative film is the story of the treatment of a young man diagnosed with Schizotypal disorder and his eventual return to ‘wholeness’. Much of the main character’s journey is framed around an obsession with Tarot Cards, which includes an extended fantasy in which he travels through the world of a series of specific cards. To capture his magical thinking, the narrative will be told with a mix of live action and experimental/mixed-media animation sequences.
Resources/references: Insights of disability studies will have a significant influence on the direction of the work, particularly ‘Extraordinary Bodies’ by Rosemarie Garland Thomson. I’m especially interested in the way she suggests representations of disability can interrupt (and perhaps transform) the limiting cultural scripts of the body on which a strictly medical model of the body/disability depends. The work will also be informed by M.M. Bakhtin’s theories of the grotesque body as well as the carnivalesque.
The initial portion of the project will include practical research in the following three areas: (1) production agreements (2) narrative form/screenwriting; and (3) Adobe After Effects.
While the work will not attempt to give a truly realistic depiction of Schizotypal experience, it will be informed by limited research into the experiences of those diagnosed with Schizotypal disorder, including: medical literature and anecdotal and first-hand accounts. In particular, accounts of alternative treatment by Patch Adams will also be an informing voice. In addition, as Tarot Card reading iconography and practice make up a significant part of the narrative frame, it will also be the focus of some general research.
While much of my own written work has explored some of these central questions in theoretical terms and in criticism, this project will give me a chance to explore them in a more practical way and also deepen my own practice as a filmmaker.
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