Nami Honors A Beautiful Mind For Year's Most Outstanding Contribution To Public Understanding Of Mental Illness

National Award To Be Shared By John And Alicia Nash, Sylvia Nasar, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Akiva Goldsman, Russell Crowe, and Jennifer Connelly

Mar 19 2002

Arlington, VA-There is no need to wait until Oscars' night on March 24 to know which movie is the Best Picture. The National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) already has picked A Beautiful Mind to honor with an award for the year's "Most Outstanding Contribution to Public Understanding of Mental Illness."

Russel Crowe portrays Nobel Prize Laureate John Nash in A Beautiful Mind"A Beautiful Mind is more than a movie," said NAMI executive director Richard Birkel, Ph.D. "It has been a breakthrough. It has contributed to a broad national dialogue about schizophrenia and other mental illnesses. It has moved families, friends, and communities to talk about the nature of mental illness, symptoms, treatment, and recovery in ways they never have before."

"America's mind has been opened," he said. "From the cover of Newsweek to CBS's 60 Minutes, people have gotten a new view of schizophrenia."

"This achievement is not limited to those who made the movie," Birkel said. "It includes John Nash, Jr. and his wife, Alicia, who have shared painful aspects of their lives with millions. It includes Sylvia Nasar, who wrote the excellent biography that Akiva Goldsman masterfully adapted for the screen. It includes Ron Howard, Russell Crowe and others, who invested their talents in projecting authentic truths about mental illness."

"NAMI will be proud to give this award to each of them, for making a difference both with the movie and the dialogue that has followed."

NAMI traditionally presents awards at its annual national convention, which this year is scheduled for June 26-30, in Cincinnati, Ohio.