AWI Short Film Competition

Black and Shiny Things

Black and Shiny Things is about an individual’s struggle with schizophrenia and its effects on a family, challenging the bond between two brothers.

After Joseph has a mental breakdown in a suicidal attempt to reach out for help, his Mom, goes in search for a solution to help her son. Sometimes the question we ask ourselves are complicated but the answers are simple. This film is about mental illness and how a family comes together to overcome their obstacle with understanding, hope and love.


Content heads up: schizophrenia, institutionalization, threat of violence with a knife

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Director: Thomas Schade

Originally from Connecticut and having spent his early and teenage years in Arizona, Thomas moved to Los Angeles in October 2011 to pursue a MFA degree in Filmmaking at the New York Film Academy where he will graduate in the spring of 2013. Before moving to Los Angeles, Thomas worked in the industry for two years as a cinematographer, editor and writer. He decided to continue his education to further prepare himself to tell meaningful and significant stories through film. Thomas has already received several mentions and honors for his first and second year short films Welcome to the Bathtub, and Black and Shiny Things. In 2013 he was working on his thesis project Following Jerry, a short film that aims to portray the realities of living with mental illness. Schady Films ( is his non-profit production company which primary goal is to educate and raise awareness towards mental illness as well as to help erase the stigma so often associated with the subject.

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Schizophrenia is an umbrella term for a wide range of conditions where a person’s experience of reality doesn’t line up with the experiences of the...


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