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Jonah Hill Will Skip Film Promo to Avoid Anxiety Attacks: The ‘Work Will Speak for Itself’

“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 said about his documentary, Stutz

Tomás Mier Aug 22, 2022

Jonah Hill attends the "Mid 90's" press conference during the 69th Berlinale International Film Festival Berlin at Grand Hyatt Hotel on February 10, 2019 in Berlin, Germany. MATTHIAS NAREYEK/GETTY IMAGES

JONAH HILL IS stepping away from public events and media appearances promoting his upcoming films to prioritize his mental health. On Wednesday, the actor shared an open letter about his yearslong battle with anxiety attacks, and why he’s choosing to skip press tours and public events promoting his new projects.

Hill opened the candid letter by revealing that he “finished directing” his documentary Stutz, which — alongside his actual therapist — delves into Hill’s personal mental health struggles and his approach to therapy. “The whole purpose of making this film is to give therapy and the tools I’ve learned in therapy to a wide audience for private use through an entertaining film,” he wrote.

The film, Hill said, is set to premiere at a “prestigious festival” in the fall. However, in an effort to “protect” himself, he won’t be making an appearance at the festival, nor with press, to promote it.

“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,” Hill wrote candidly, later adding, “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 wrote that he often cringes at letters like the one he shared with fans, but said he felt “privileged” to be able to take time off. “I won’t lose my job while working on my anxiety. With this letter and with Stutz, I’m hoping to make it more normal for people to talk and act on this stuff,” Hill wrote. “So they can take steps towards feeling better and so that the people in their lives might understand their issues more clearly.”

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He ended the letter, writing, “I hope the work will speak for itself and I’m grateful to my collaborators, my business partners, and to all reading this for your understanding and support.”

Along with Stutz, Hill co-wrote and stars in the Netflix film You People, which comes out later this year. The movie also features appearances by Eddie Murphy, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Molly Gordon, Mike Epps, and Mia Long.

Here’s Jonah Hill’s note in its entirety:

“I have finished directing my second film, a documentary about me and my therapist which explores mental health in general called Stutz. The whole purpose of making this film is to give therapy and the tools I’ve learned in therapy to a wide audience for private use through an entertaining film.

“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.

“I am so grateful that the film will make its world premiere at a prestigious film festival this fall, and 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.

“I usually cringe at letters or statements like this but I understand that I am of the privileged few who can afford to take time off. I won’t lose my job while working on my anxiety. With this letter and with Stutz, I’m hoping to make it more normal for people to talk and act on this stuff. So they can take steps towards feeling better and so that the people in their lives might understand their issues more clearly.“I hope the work will speak for itself and I’m grateful to my collaborators, my business partners and to all reading this for your understanding and support. -Jonah Hill

From Rolling Stone US.

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