(SpinLab) Hollywood & Mind, the venture positioned uniquely at the intersection of mental health and entertainment, announced today that GRAMMY-nominated and award-winning musician, actor, advocate and New York Times best-selling author Demi Lovato has been added to the program for its inaugural Summit, May 11 at UTA, the Summit's Founding Sponsor. Hollywood & Mind founder Cathy Applefeld Olson will interview Lovato on stage in a fireside chat.
"When it comes to destigmatizing mental health issues and advocating for those who are struggling both within the entertainment industry and outside of it, Demi Lovato has continually led by example, sharing her own experiences with her fans and community," said Applefeld Olson. "I'm excited for Hollywood & Mind attendees to learn first-hand from Demi, whose unflinching honesty and transparency about her own mental health journey have made her such a powerful force."
Lovato joins other newly announced Hollywood & Mind speakers including "A Million Little Things" creator DJ Nash; Meredith Goldberg-Morse, director of social impact at MTV Entertainment Studios; producer Joy Gorman Wettels ("13 Reasons Why," "UnPrisoned"); singer/songwriter Em Beihold; actor and writer Paul Campbell; and actor, model and podcast host Hayley Hasselhoff. The day will also include a special performance by world-renowned poet, artist, and New York Times bestselling author Rupi Kaur. They join previously announced speakers including media mogul Charlamagne Tha God; singer/songwriter Valerie June; Metamorphosis Records founder Meredith O'Connor; Christina Wootton, VP of Global Partnerships at Roblox; Vicky Cornell, wife of the late Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell; Percy "Master P" Miller, rapper, music producer and NAMI ambassador; Dr. Ken Duckworth, Chief Medical Officer at NAMI; Phil Schermer, CEO of Project Healthy Minds; Schroeder Stribling, President and CEO of Mental Health America; Carmela Wallace, Founder of Live Free 999 and mother of the late Jarad "Juice WRLD" Higgins; and Zak Williams, mental health advocate, founder of PYM and son of the late Robin Williams.
A 2022 USC Annenberg study determined that of the 100 top-grossing films only 1.5% of the 4,502 speaking or named characters were depicted with a mental health condition. The number is in stark contrast to the more than 20% of U.S. adults who live with a mental illness, according to the National Institutes of Health.
This first-of-its-kind Summit, to be held during Mental Health Awareness Month, brings together executives and talent across television, film, music and tech with mental health experts for conversations on topics including mental health storytelling, the power of song, opportunities to elevate mental wellness through technology, and the evolution of partnerships among mental health organizations and creators. UTA serves as an ideal location for this groundbreaking event, given its strategic positioning at the nexus of the film, music, tech and television industries.
After the daylong program, Hollywood & Mind will host a cocktail reception featuring networking opportunities and activations, including a Mindfulness Wall presented by author and podcast host Case Kenny.