A new film starring Emmy award winning actress Kat Dennings will follow the true story of a young woman coping with depression and drug addiction. The movie is based on the life of a girl named Renee Yohe who’s struggles to recover from addiction became the inspiration for the global movement known as “To Write Love on Her Arms”.
The film will address issues of addiction, abuse, mental health and the ability to recover by asking for help and support. In the same way the true story and global movement has inspired people all over the world, the film will be a vision of hope, healing and redemption for anyone that has been involved in drug use or dealt with mental health issues in their lives.
Founding the Non-Profit Organization
To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit organization based in Melbourne, Florida which aims to present hope for people dealing with issues of addiction, depression, self-injury and thoughts of suicide. The organization invests directly into treatment and recovery and helps connect people to treatment centers, websites, books, support groups and other resources so that they can lead more positive lives.
TWLOHA helps bring awareness to these issues and encourages people to have honest conversations and build a community for support. The group was founded in 2006 by Jamie Tworkowski who wrote a story about his friend 19 year-old Renee Yohe and her struggles with addiction, depression, self-injury and attempted suicide.
He began working on creating the organization and printed T-shirts to help fund Yohe’s drug treatment. Bands began to wear the T shirts to show support for TWLOHA and people who were also struggling with similar issues began to respond. The movement started in order to help one girl in Florida and expanded to invest $1,200,000 in treatment and recovery to date.
Telling the Story through Film
The film has already been shown at the Omaha and Florida film festivals back in 2012 but is set to be released by Sony in March of 2015. Kat Dennings of the popular TV show ‘2 Broke Girls’ stars as Renee Yohe. The film blends fantasy, music and hard realism while providing a message of hope and telling the true story of recovery that launched the movement almost a decade ago.
The main character Renee is a high school student dealing with bipolar disorder. She is spirited and creative and often uses music to escape her problems, but she eventually goes down a dark path of drug abuse. She asks for help and a group a friends supports her decision to enter a treatment center including the movement founder Tworkowski, played by Chad Michael Murray.
The film was originally entitled ‘Day One’ when it was shown in 2012 but will be released under the name of the now globally known organization. Yohe, Tworkowski and others involved in the real life story served as story consultants for the film and collaborated with director Nathan Frankowski to create the script. The producer of the film, David Blair McKenna, offered his home to Renee years ago for five days so that she could become sober before entering rehab.
After inspiring thousands of people across the world, Renee’s story of recovery and redemption will now reach an even larger audience when the new film is released this year. This story of hope has helped people suffering from addiction and depression to connect with treatment centers and create a community of support.
The movement has already received growing attention through popular bands and artists like Paramore and Switchfoot wearing TWLOHA t-shirts. The new film will provide the context of this movement and give people an understanding of what the organization is really about. It may even inspire people to get help for their own personal struggles with mental health or substance abuse.