Amanda Lipp is a documentary filmmaker, director, and editor passionate about capturing stories at the intersection of mental health and social impact. Amanda’s creative approach is grounded in social psychology, entertainment-education, and systems change theory. She is either the one-woman crew running A-Z, or collaborating with crews on larger scale global productions.

Empathy Driven

Amanda believes that the process of making a film is an experience unto itself, and just as important as the final cut. This requires building trust, emotional awareness and collaboration at all stages of the creative production.

Production best-practices include:

  • Trauma-informed
  • Peer-to-peer
  • Strategic sharing
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Consent and collaboration
  • Person & Identity-driven¬†

Person centered | Cause driven

Amanda's goal is to capture the mind through the heart. She coaches and works with interviewees to understand their story, passions, interests, and how that may be shared to drive the Call to Action of the film.

Examples of stories that lead to impact:

Recreation Therapy:

  • Goal: Pass Recreation Therapy licensure legislation in California
  • Film: Tell the story of Rigo, a young paraplegic, and his relationship with his Recreation Therapist, Alivia. Watch film here.

Youth Psychosis

  • Goal: Increase awareness of First Episode Psychosis treatment in NYC
  • Film: Tell the story of Ambar, a young advocate and writer who has schizophrenia. Watch film here.

Behind the scenes

Entertainment-education is a type of narrative messaging intervention that emotionally involves the viewer in the storyline, and aims to effect social change - which can occur at the level of individual, community, or society. Essentially, the goal is to deliver prosocial health messages to positively influencing awareness, knowledge, attitudes, and/or behaviors. Other theories that may be helpful in mental health storytelling and production practices include:

  • Transportation Theory (Green and Brock)
    • The extent that individuals are absorbed into a story (identification)
  • The Identification Scale (Cohen)
    • The extent to which viewers identify with a character
  • Entertainment Overcoming Resistance Model (Moyer-Guse).
    • The narrative format increases absorption in the drama, reducing resistance to the messaging.
  • Elaboration Likelihood Model (Petty, Cacioppo, Shrum)
    • Immersive engagement making it easier to influence beliefs, attitudes, and behavior.
  • Social Cognitive Theory (Bandura)
    • The most commonly applied theory in the area of entertainment-education

Amanda has worked

Mental Health Innovation

Blog subscribers get email updates immediately weekly, or monthly.