Your First Look at UNLEARNING SEX from Director Zanah Thirus
April 17, 2020 by Screenmag
Here is your first look at the new documentary feature from Chicago filmmaker Zanah Thirus. UNLEARNING SEX chronicles Thirus' six month journey through sexual trauma therapy and healing. This powerful and personal film brings you into the therapy room with Thirus, while weaving in interviews from trauma therapists, sex educators, and activists. We are honored to release the teaser-trailer for UNLEARNING SEX exclusively here on Screen Magazine today:
"Sexual trauma therapy changed my life," Thirus told Screen. "It also was an incredible learning process for me. I learned so much about myself, how trauma had impacted my life, and how much better my life had become as a result of healing. Initially, I was documenting my therapy sessions (before, during, and after) to have a reference point for myself, and to remember how to use the tools that my therapist gave me. As I rewatched footage, and listened to the audio clips, it was mindblowing to see just how much I had changed - for the better - and how much I had learned over the course of six months. That's when I decided to organize roundtable discussions with therapists, educators, and activists. It all just came together over one year."
Microbudget Mastery and What's Next for Zanah
What is almost as impactful as the film itself is the achievement of making this entire feature for a total of $1100. And yes, that decimal point is in the right spot. Eleven hundred dollars. How did she do it? "By keeping my team small, collaborating with my friends, and taking on multiple above the line roles [producer and editor in addition to directing], that's how we got it done," Thirus told SCREEN. "My film friends in Chicago and ATL (Cinematographer, script supervisors, animators, gaffers, and sound mixers) helped me put this together my lending their gear, expertise, and time. Also, I focus on education/interview based documentaries. They are a much more concrete way of documentary storytelling, and can save so much time and money.
Thirus will have the entire film will be completed by end of this month and will begin pursuing the festival circuit. The goal is to submit this film to a variety of social justice centered film festivals across the country, and follow that run up with a trauma awareness screening tour with organizations & universities.