EXCLUSIVE: Here’s some sweet first footage for under-the-radar animated film Bug Therapy, which is voiced by Dr. Phil McGraw, Meghan Trainor, Jay Leno, Sterling K. Brown, Tom Green, Emily Goglia, and Jason Reisig.
The short film, which is being sold at TIFF by Lon Haber & Co, is focused on mental health issues and was the recipient of an Epic Games MegaGrant. The producers are hoping to make a feature with the same cast and creatives.
In Bug Therapy, Citronella (Trainor), a mosquito who faints at the sight of blood, tries to muster the courage to attend group therapy, led by Dr. Pill (Dr. Phil McGraw), to overcome her phobia. She learns that everyone faces mental health struggles – Stick Bug (Brown) battles depression over never feeling seen, Fly (Leno) is OCD/germaphobe and can’t stop washing his hands, Grasshopper (Green) suffers from addiction to coffee, Praying Mantis (Goglia) is narcissistic/delusional and believes she’s God, Dragonfly couple (film writers Michael Jann and Michele Jourdan) are co-dependent, and Spider (Reisig) tries to overcome his phobia of spiders.
Leno said: “I play a Fly with OCD, who can’t stop washing his hands. And it’s based on an actual fly. So, it’s a true story!”
Said Michael Jann and Michele Jourdan: “Right now, more people than ever are struggling with mental-health. We just wanted to make people laugh, and say ‘everyone struggles with something, and there’s no shame in asking for help’. We’re blown away by the amazing stars who instantly jumped on board to make this film as funny and entertaining as it is. Their hilarious performances show, ‘it’s okay to not be okay!'”
Epic Games’ $100M MegaGrant program was set up to aid creators working with Epic’s Unreal Engine technology.
Jann and Jourdan are represented by Mitchel Stein, The Stein Agency, and managed by Angie Lucania and Sean Dubravac of Entertainment Lab.
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