Monday, October 25, 2010
While most of us know John Kirwan as a legendary All Black wing who played close to 100 Tests and won a World Cup in 1987, what many dont realise is that at the height of his career, young Kirwan suffered from clinical depression.
All Blacks Dont Cry is a short film from multitalented filmmaker Julian Shaw that highlights the debilitating illness that Kirwan, along with countless others, have suffered with in silence.
Shaw, who idolised Kirwan while growing up in Auckland, teamed up with the great wing to help create awareness during Depression Awareness Month and paint a real picture of what one can go through, even when seemingly living the life .
Depression is something I have lived through myself, and its the hardest thing Ive been through as a young man, says Shaw on his website.
Someone like John helped me a lot. Growing up in Auckland when I was a kid, John Kirwan was my hero - he was the most famous man in New Zealand, a World Cup winner, and probably the best Rugby player in the world for a while.
"When I later learned about his struggle that this mighty All Black had been to the edge and almost lost his life it gave me a new perspective on what Id been through myself. He was definitely someone who left me incredibly inspired."
Shaw is actually a regular visitor here on Rugbydump, so he reached out after completion of the project. "I'm a big fan of your site. It's where I get my fix of Northern Hemisphere rugby, which can be televised at some pretty tough hours Down Under," he said earlier.
If you or anyone you know has suffered from depression, please support this powerful film by sharing it. Its about awareness, and its about realising that you too can be helped in the same way as JK was when he finally broke the silence.
Learn more about the film at www.allblacksdontcry.com , where you can also purchase John Kirwans memoir All Blacks Dont Cry to help support depression awareness.
You can read more about Julian on his website www.julianshaw.com.au , which also includes information about his current project, Cup of Dreams, in which he follows the All Blacks in their build up to the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand next year.
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