Indie Lens Pop-Up Presents: BEDLAM

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April 14, 2020
4:30pm Pacific Time
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Through the intimate and brave stories from families, medical providers, activists, and people in-and-out of ERs, jails, and homeless camps, BEDLAM tells the story of America’s mental health crisis. What is being done? How can we support our communities and care for people with serious mental illness?

Hear their stories and discover how you can make a difference by joining us for a special Indie Lens Pop-Up online screening of BEDLAM. Participate in a virtual chat with producer Peter Miller and Dr. Ken Duckworth, Chief Medical Officer of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness).


This event is hosted by Indie Lens Pop-Up in collaboration with California Film Institute, Georgia Public Broadcasting, Kansas City Public Library, Panhandle PBS, and Pickford Film Center, with support from ITVS, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and PBS.



BEDLAM directed by Kenneth Paul Rosenberg, M.D.

To get to the bottom of the mental health crisis in the U.S., psychiatrist and documentarian Kenneth Paul Rosenberg M.D. chronicles the personal, poignant stories of those suffering from serious mental illness, including his own family, to bring the scope of the crisis to light and offer possible solutions. Shot over the course of five years, BEDLAM takes viewers inside Los Angeles County’s overwhelmed and vastly under-resourced psych ER, a nearby jail warehousing thousands of psychiatric patients, and the homes — and homeless encampments — of people affected by severe mental illness, where silence and shame often worsen the suffering.

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Extended Preview | PBS American Portrait

PBS invites America to be a part of its biggest initiative yet, PBS American Portrait, a national storytelling initiative that seeks to define what it really means to be an American today. To answer this question, PBS and its partners are collecting photos, videos and text submissions from across America to capture the state and spirit of our nation. Be heard and share your story now.

Independent Lens 2019-2020 Season Promo

"Want me to tell you a story?" Coming to PBS, America’s home for documentaries, Independent Lens presents a new group of powerful, award-winning films that will thrust viewers into the heart of conversations across America's neighborhoods, from Boise to the Bronx, from Alaska to Long Island to North Carolina. Premieres October 28, 2019.



Shot over the course of five years, Bedlam examines the mental health crisis through intimate stories of those people who are in-and-out of overwhelmed and under-resourced psych emergency rooms, jails and homeless camps in Los Angeles, while psychiatrist and filmmaker Dr. Ken Rosenberg also searches for answers to his own late sister’s mental illness.

120 minutes


  • Moderator Avatar
    Indie Lens Pop-Up

    Indie Lens Pop-Up is a neighborhood series that brings people together for film screenings and community-driven conversations. Featuring documentaries seen on PBS's Independent Lens, Indie Lens Pop-Up draws local residents, leaders and organizations to discuss what matters most, from newsworthy topics and social issues, to family and community relationships.

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    Emmalee Hackshaw

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    Hilary Hulsey

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    Mikayla Nicholson

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    Lindsey Foat - Kansas City Public Library

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    Joanne Parsont

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    Zoe Stahl


  • Panelist Avatar
    Peter Miller


    Peter Miller (producer/writer) is an Emmy and Peabody-award winning filmmaker whose documentaries have screened in cinemas and on television throughout the world. His films include A.K.A. DOC POMUS, SACCO AND VANZETTI, JEWS AND BASEBALL: AN AMERICAN LOVE STORY, ROBERT SHAW: MAN OF MANY VOICES, PROJECTIONS OF AMERICA, THE INTERNATIONALE, and A CLASS APART. Peter has also been a producer on numerous documentaries by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, including the PBS series THE WAR, JAZZ, and FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Ken Duckworth, M.D.


    Ken Duckworth’s journey into psychiatry started when he was a boy growing up with a dad who experienced severe bipolar disorder. His father was loving, kind and periodically quite ill, hospitalized for months at a time. Ken became a psychiatrist in part to help his father. He is very fortunate to serve as the medical director for NAMI and to be part of this remarkable community. Along with his work at NAMI, Ken also works to improve care at Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Massachusetts, volunteers and consults at an early psychosis clinic at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center and teaches as an assistant clinical professor at Harvard University Medical School. Ken is double-board certified in adult and child/adolescent psychiatry and has completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship.

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The views and opinions expressed in this online screening are those of the presenters and participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITVS, public broadcasting, or any entities hosting the screening.