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Powerful film breaks the silence of male suicide

Press release   •   Sep 09, 2016 15:34 BST

New film from CALM tackling male suicide

For World Suicide Prevention Day, the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) has released a powerful film that breaks the silence surrounding suicide, the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK.

Created by Hungry Man with 101 London, the film offers a glimpse of what we rarely hear: men talking about depression and suicidal thoughts. By using the actual words of men who’ve been supported by CALM, director David Allain created a script inspired by verbatim theatre: "I wanted to create mini scenes that aren’t what we expect to see and yet are rooted in the journeys of real men.”

The film features an ensemble cast including Ashley Thomas ('24: Legacy') and Marc Pickering ('Boardwalk Empire'), whilst the score was provided by musician and BBC Radio 6 DJ Tom Robinson.

Suicide often comes as a shock to family and friends, but CALM’s research shows that feeling low or suicidal is very common. A recent poll revealed that one in four men aged under 45 have considered taking their own life. This shock informed the making of the film.

David Allain said: "I’ve been that person that says, ‘but he seemed fine the other week'. It shook me to my core - the dreadful realisation of being too late. It’s vital to listen while we can, and to encourage others to see how talking really can save lives."

CALM’s CEO Jane Powell said: "We know the cost of men’s silence. Male suicide continues to fall under the radar, despite the fact that in the UK an average of 12 men take their own lives every single day, at an estimated cost of £20 million. This film really packs a punch by making you think about what isn’t be talked about."

CALM is urging people to share the film to spread awareness of male suicide and the importance of hearing what is so often left unsaid. 


About CALM

The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is an award-winning charity dedicated to preventing male suicide in the UK. In 2014, male suicide accounted for 76% of all suicides and is the single biggest cause of death in men under 45 in the UK (ONS).

CALM is a registered charity in England and Wales, no. 1110621, and in Scotland, no. SC044347. 

Film credits

  • Director & Writer: David Allain
  • Production Company: Hungry Man
  • Producer: Tom Gardner
  • Executive Producer: Matt Buels
  • Agency: 101 London
  • Creative Director: Joe Bruce
  • Cast: Ashley Thomas, Marc Pickering, Tom Robinson, Troy Glasgow, Michael Dixon, Kevin Jay, Tim Berrington
  • Composer: Tom Robinson
  • Director of Photography: Richard Mott
  • Editor: Kevin Palmer (Ten Three)
  • Production Designer: Kajsa Soderlund
  • Colourist: Richard Fearon (MPC)
  • Special Thanks: Anna Shaffer, Annabel Bates, Elly Condron, Ed Hoadley, Luke Raffety, Alice White
  • Support from Octopus Foundation

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