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Trust Me, I'm Sick

'Trust Me I'm Sick' is a short, five-part documentary series exploring how chronic illness influences the lives and choices of five people in Los Angeles, California.

Directed by British-American filmmaker Sarah Stewart, the series follows individuals living with entirely different illnesses - from Diabetes Type 1 to Lupus to HIV.

The series follows Giuliani (29), Henriette (50), Cassandra (28), Ezra (18) and Matt (32) and explores the unexpected ways that illness impacts their everyday lives.

The series opens with 'Get Well Soon', our pilot episode in which each character shares their diagnosis journey. The following four episodes focus on the different ways in which illness impacts the characters’ every day lives, from who they date, in ‘Too Much To Ask’, to their mental health, in our final film ‘It’s All In Your head’.

This series - produced entirely by a team of women living with illnesses - was created to challenge simplistic stereotypes surrounding chronic illness and to instead offer a more nuanced understanding of what it is truly live to live with an illness every day.

  • Sarah Stewart
  • Sarah Stewart
  • Erica Lupinacci
  • Cassandra Rush
    Key Cast
  • Matt Tarro
    Key Cast
  • Ezra Wheeler
    Key Cast
  • Henriette Ivanans-Mcintyre
    Key Cast
  • Giuliani Alvarenga
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Web / New Media
  • Genres:
    Documentary, non-profit, disability, short film
  • Runtime:
    35 minutes 28 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 30, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    50,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Sarah Stewart

First-time director Sarah Stewart has worked across development, production and post both in the US and UK. She worked for HBO on 'VEEP' in London and then moved to Los Angeles in 2016 to work on 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'. In 2017, after living with a chronic condition for five years, she founded Arlo Pictures, an all-female run production company dedicated to sharing more nuanced stories about illness and disability. She has produced projects for Stept Studios, Breakwater Studios and the New York Times.

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Director Statement

Creating 'Trust Me, I'm Sick' has been an all-out labor of love for the last five years.

My co-creator Erica and I first met through her non-profit, Suffering The Silence. Erica has been living with Lupus for nine years while I have had an undiagnosed stomach condition since 2015. As women living with chronic conditions, we quickly bonded over a shared belief that the existing film and TV content about illness did not accurately represent us nor our community.

Through this series, Erica and I have founded not only a friendship and working relationship, but also a community that extends far beyond ourselves. We are honored to have the full support of our contributors who generously shared their stories in such candid detail. It is our collective hope that 'Trust Me, I'm Sick' helps people in our illness communities feel seen and heard, and that we are able, post-release, to use it as a teaching tool to help educate both medical professionals and the broader public about the emotional experience of chronic illness, from the perspective of we, the patients.