Every time I hear a rape statistic I am astounded. Recently I thought I heard that one in three women have experienced sexual violence in their lives but couldn’t find a link to confirm that, and my foggy brain is not all that trustworthy. So I Googled it and came up with this site, which reports that 2.7 million women a year are victims of rape (2006). And anywhere you look, the figure is usually followed by the grim reminder that many cases go unreported.
The issue has been on my mind lately because a good friend of mine has written a very powerful screenplay, now in preproduction, called The Prop is The Girl, and it hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks. It is a full feature indie about rape culture and sexual abuse. Writer/director Stephen Coombs leads a very believable cast (Zarah Mahler – “Manson Girls”; Bonita Friedericy – the TV Series “Chuck”; Dustin Ingram – “Paranormal Activity 3”; and Bryan Barter – “The Social Network”). Seen through the eyes of a twenty-three-year-old girl, this gritty and unapologetic depiction of America’s modern party culture sheds light on the shocking reality of sexual abuse and drugs. Based on a true story, the film seeks to empower the countless victims of sexual abuse.
In addition to the film, the creators of the project have built an online forum at www.thepropisthegirl.com giving victims of sexual abuse a place to anonymously share their stories and be encouraged by others. They were stunned by the number of visits to the site, and not surprisingly, they have been inundated with stories. I applaud my friend Stephen Coombs and his team for providing this forum. I wish the project well!