Lady Gaga has released a short film exploring the connection between kindness and mental health to coincide with World Kindness Day on Nov. 13.
The 30-minute special supported by Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation follows Gaga and mental health expert Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble speaking with a group of 11 young people exploring their personal mental health journeys. The conversations highlight the relationship between kindness and mental health, and how to overcome the stigma that comes when discussing the issue. James Shani, founder of Asylum Films and longtime filmmaker and video producer, served as the film’s Creator and Executive Producer. Bobby Campbell (he/him/his) also served as Executive Producer. Niharika Desai directed the feature.
“Kindness and mental health go hand in hand,” Gaga said in the film. “To me, kindness is not politeness.”
Marty, a filmmaker and screenwriter who appears in the film, credits the Born This Way Foundation for creating a safe space. The platform provides LGBTQ youth with programs and initiatives aimed at demonstrating the power of kindness to impact well-being and validating emotions. He said, “It gave me a platform that will change so many lives when they see a proud, Latinx transgender man say it is beautiful to be trans.”
Gaga, the actor, singer and philanthropist who is on the award season campaign trail for her upcoming film “House of Gucci,” has also released a book, “Channel Kindness,” with essays from LGBTQ teens stressed the importance of sharing stories. Meeting young people around the world who have shared their stories with her has been a life-changing experience, Gaga said.
“It’s through those stories of love, joy, grief, empathy, and radical acceptance, that young people continue to show what it means to channel kindness – to themselves and others,” she said.
In the film, Breland-Noble, a psychologist and scientist, guides the youth through an exercise that demonstrates the common struggles of many of the participants.
Watch the short film below: