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Show Must Go On, The (ATOM Study Guide)

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The Show Must Go On (Ben Steel, 2019) is the first film to tell the story of the mental health of the 42,000 people working in the Australian arts and entertainment industry. While 'show business' is often seen as glamorous, fun, exciting, and well paid, recent and alarming world first research from Entertainment Assist and Victoria University paints a darker picture for entertainment workers. Anxiety symptoms are ten times higher, sleep disorders are seven times higher and symptoms of depression are five times higher than the national average. Suicide attempts in the industry are double the national average.

This film follows former Home and Away actor and debut documentary filmmaker Ben Steel on a soul-searching investigation into why are there so many arts and entertainment workers developing and struggling with mental wellbeing issues. Ben shares his intimate experiences living with depression and anxiety for the past few years, and along the way, we are witness to his intimate conversations with key creatives and crew, actors, dancers, musicians, performers – many of them household names – who have likewise struggled and how they have survived. While this film may not reach and save every life, we hope it will have enough impact to at least save one, and that it will spark much needed conversations about mental health.

Curriculum Links:

The Show Must Go On can be linked to the following subject areas within the Australian Curriculum:

  • English
  • Health and Physical Education
  • The General Capabilities of 'Ethical Understanding' and 'Personal and Social Capability'

The Show Must Go On can also be used as a supplementary text for the following senior school subjects:

  • Ethics
  • Health and Human Development
  • Media Arts
  • Music
  • Performing Arts
  • Psychology

The Show Must Go On is also available to stream for 7-day rental, 30-day rental, 1-year rental and lifetime access here. The DVD is also available to purchase here.

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