Filming has begun on 'Renee,' the upcoming feature film, which tells the story of Renee Yohe, the girl who inspired the creation of one of our favorite non-profit organizations, To Write Love on Her Arms.
"The compelling thing about Renee's story is that it's the story of thousands of people around the world," To Write Love on Her Arms founder Jamie Tworkowski tells JSYK exclusively. "TWLOHA serves as evidence of that -- the thousands of messages we've read and responded to, and the conversations we've been able to have on the road over the last five years."
The story of pain, addiction and hope will star Kat Dennings ('Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist') as Renee, Chad Michael Murray ('One Tree Hill') as Jamie and Rupert Friend ('Pride and Prejudice') as David McKenna, a recovering addict who opens up his home to Renee.
Renee is battling alcohol and drug abuse, while suffering from depression and inflicting self-injury. The film chronicles her road to recovery in a gritty, but artistic way, and Jamie hopes that it will help bring these struggles into the limelight, while further spreading TWLOHA's positive messages, and reminding teens that they are not alone.
"We hear from so many people who are moving from a place of feeling alone in their struggles to a place of stepping into getting the help they need and deserve," Jamie adds. "Our hope with this movie being made is that the movement will continue as we continue to push against both the stigma and the silence that too often keep these things hidden."
Corbin Bleu, Mark Saul and newcomers Will Peltz and Juliana Harkavy will also star in the film. The organization has a strong tie to the music community, which will be reflected in the movie by on-camera performances by Travie McCoy and singer-songwriter Rachael Yamagata, among others. Are you excited for 'Renee'? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.