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Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan

Writers & Creators of "BUG THERAPY" an Animated Short Film About Mental Health

Writers & Creators of "BUG THERAPY" an Animated Short Film About Mental Health

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Austin, TX, USA
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Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan Biography

It's a story about a mosquito who faints at the sight of blood.

And, her name is Citronella.

Michael Jann is an Emmy-nominated comedy writer for "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" and "The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon". He and his wife Michele Jourdan have written and created "Bug Therapy," an award-winning short, animated film about mental health, starring Meghan Trainor, Dr. Phil, Jay Leno, Sterling K. Brown and Tom Green.

"Bug Therapy" is about Citronella (Trainor) getting up the courage to enter group therapy for the first time. The group is run by a Pill Bug therapist named "Dr. Pill" (Dr. Phil).

On stage, Mike and Michele share the 9-minute film, and their deeply-personal story of their 27-year-old son Max's mental-health breakdown, hospitalization, diagnosis and ongoing recovery (fingers crossed), and how it fuels their passion to fight the stigma of mental illness.

You can’t solve a problem if you can’t talk about it. And, "Bug Therapy" uses humor and entertainment to break the ice. "Everyone struggles with something. And there's no shame in asking for help."

NAMI-California CEO Jessica Cruz: "Your film is literally our mission statement. To fight the stigma, and change the conversation about mental health. This could help so many people."

Jay Leno plays a Fly with OCD, who can't stop washing his hands. Says Leno, "It's based on an actual fly. So, it's a true story!"

Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan Speaking Topics

  • Using HUMOR to Fight The Stigma

    Michele and I are fighting the stigma of mental illness the only way that actually works: with humor.

    A career in late-night comedy writing (22 years helping write Jay Leno's Tonight Show monologue) has taught me one thing above all else: Comedy breaks the ice.

    Humor allows you to discuss ANY topic. And, that's important, because you can't solve a problem if you can't talk about it. And, if you can't joke about something, well, then, you're probably afraid to talk about it. That's called shame. And, shame gets in the way of everything good.

    "Bug Therapy" is about a mosquito who faints at the sight of blood.

    The other bugs include, Dr. Phil McGraw as a Pill Bug therapist. Meghan Trainor as Citronella. Jay Leno as the OCD Fly, who can’t stop washing his hands. Sterling K. Brown as a depressed Stick Bug, who feels like no one sees him. Tom Green as a coffee-addicted Grasshopper. He loves it, but it makes him jumpy. Michele & I play the dysfunctional, co-dependent Dragonfly Couple, she's literally on top of him. There's also a Praying Mantis who doesn't pray, because she thinks she is god. A Spider who's afraid of Spiders. And a Leafbug who suffers from anxiety • he's afraid of autumn, when all the leaves die!

    The bugs in BUG THERAPY are funny. They initially fear being laughed at, but when they do actually laugh at each other -• it doesn't kill them! And, it bonds them together. And, on this point, Michele and I do not spare ourselves.

    In addition to showing our film, we share our deeply personal, and liberating (formerly "embarrassing") story of our 27-year-old son Max's mental-health breakdown, psych-wards, and ongoing recovery (fingers crossed). The story is both a terrifying -• and funny. Yes. There are funny moments, and that is so freeing!

  • The Importance Of Therapy

    Most people fear therapy. (Maybe they should talk to someone about that!)

    I used to be afraid of therapy. As a man, I incorrectly saw therapy as a sign of weakness. A sign that I wasn't mentally tough enough to endure. Or, how about this: a sign that I had no real friends to talk to. "Shame", anyone?

    But, if you've had the good fortune to go to therapy, and had a good therapist, you realize: They don't tell you what to do. They're reluctant to even give advice! What a good therapist does, is listen. And, help YOU hear what YOU'RE saying. They basically hold a mirror up to you, and ask you if what you're hearing makes sense to you.

    Dr. Phil (I'm a fan) will often listen intently to someone's long, detailed, self-analysis and strategy. And, then, he asks one question: "How's that working for you?" Patients sometimes burst into tears, and admit, "It's not! It's not working!" Now, they're ready to try something new. And, it was "their idea" to do so. :)

    Everyone would benefit from therapy. If you think rich successful people have it made, guess again. Like the message of our film states: Everyone struggles with something. And, there's no shame in asking for help.

    Michele and I have been together 13 years. We're both in therapy. If I was single, and dating today, I would insist the other person be in therapy!

  • Resiliency and Self-Transformation

    We've all know someone who's a MESS. Who's made bad choice after bad choice. Always seems to be in a hole, and just digging themselves in deeper. Why do some people come out of that, while others never seem to get their life together?

    I (Michele) was one of those "messes". Kicked out at 17, homeless, on drugs, in abusive relationships.Throw in a modeling gig in NYC, and marrying into a cult? What could go wrong there? It is a miracle I'm not dead, or in jail right now. How did I dig myself out of that? How did I overcome?

    In therapy terms, it's called "Doing the work". Working on myself. Accepting that I alone had put myself in that hole, and I alone, and with a little help, could get myself out.

Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan Videos

  • The Line Starts Here. (Let's Cross It!) | Michael Jann | TEDxUCLA
    Two decades of writing the Tonight Show monolog for Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon gave Michael a fighting chance to cope - and help those around him cope...

FAQs on booking Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan

  • How do I book Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan to speak at my event?

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    Speaking fees for Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. The estimated fees to book Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan are for live events and for virtual events. For the most current speaking fee to hire Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan, click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak directly with an experienced booking agent.
  • What topics does Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan speak about?

    Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan is a keynote speaker and industry expert whose speaking topics include Comedians, Education, Empowerment, Entertainment, Health, Mental Health, Personal Growth, TED, Virtual Speakers.
  • Where does Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan travel from?

    Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan generally travels from Austin, TX, USA, but can be booked for private corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. For more details, please contact an AAE Booking agent.
  • Who is Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan’s agent?

    AAE Speakers Bureau has successfully booked keynote speakers like Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan for clients worldwide since 2002. As a full-service speaker booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Please click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page including the details of your event, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan for your next private or corporate function.
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Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics such as Using HUMOR to Fight The Stigma , The Importance Of Therapy and Resiliency and Self-Transformation. The estimated speaking fee range to book Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan for your event is $10,000 - $20,000. Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan generally travels from Austin, TX, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Allison Massari, Vance Johnson, Dr. Chris Sopa, Dr. Kristen Lee and Brandon Farbstein. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Michael Jann & Michele Jourdan for an upcoming live or virtual event.

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