Jonah Hill's new movie takes you inside his therapy sessions

Watch the star with his therapist in the Stutz trailer.

Jonah Hill laughing in still from 'Stutz' trailer
Mental Health
Originally Published: 

Anyone who loves their therapist can probably attest to the following: You feel so comfortable and seen in your therapy sessions that you wish others could experience the same level of self-awareness and growth you’ve achieved in a few weeks, months, or years time.

Jonah Hill is no different. On Tuesday, Netflix released the trailer for the actor’s newest film, a documentary titled Stutz. But this project is unlike others we’ve seen from Hill, who’s best known for zeitgeisty movies like Superbad and The Wolf of Wall Street. In this new turn, the actor-turned-director takes an unorthodox approach to therapy, giving viewers an intimate look into his own sessions with longtime friend and therapist, Phil Stutz. The goal: to share the skills Hill has learned along the way in hopes it will help others who are otherwise hesitant to seek out or unable to afford professional help — an unfortunate reality facing BIPOC and low-income communities.

“My life has gotten immeasurably better as a result of working with you. If it worked for me, maybe it will work for other people." - Jonah Hill

​​"I'm just gonna acknowledge how odd this endeavor is — a patient making a movie about his therapist," Hill says to Stutz in one scene of the film, which is shot in black and white. "But my life has gotten immeasurably better as a result of working with you. If it worked for me, maybe it will work for other people."

Hill has been candid about his mental health for years, even penning an open letter to fans announcing he wouldn’t be participating in media interviews for Stutz, citing his years-long experience with anxiety and panic attacks as the reason.

"The whole purpose of making this film is to give therapy and the tools I've learned in therapy to a wide audience for private use through an entertaining film," Hill wrote in a statement to Deadline in August, after Stutz was first announced. "Through this journey of self-discovery within the film, I have come to the understanding that I have spent nearly 20 years experiencing anxiety attacks, which are exacerbated by media appearances and public-facing events."

Hill isn’t alone. According to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders affect 40 million adults (that’s 19.1% of the U.S. adult population). And while a 2021 survey conducted by Onepoll on behalf of Vida Health found that the number of people seeking help had increased since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, 47% of the survey respondents still viewed going to therapy as “a sign of weakness,” and 27% of respondents said they hadn’t been to therapy because they didn’t feel their problems were “big enough.”

As a first-generation Ecuadorian American who battles anxiety and depression — and supplements self-soothing with therapy and medication — it warms my little anxious heart that Hill is working toward making therapy more mainstream, in his own way. At the end of the day, despite our different racial and professional backgrounds, therapy is still therapy. I’m confident we’ll all be able to take away a few nuggets of wisdom from Hill’s candid conversations with Dr. Stutz. Stutz is set to premiere on Netflix on November 14.

If you or someone you know is seeking help for mental health concerns, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website, or call 1-800-950-NAMI (6264). For confidential treatment referrals, visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website, or call the National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). In an emergency, contact the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline by calling or texting 988, or call 911.