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Long Live My Happy Head

Austen McCowan & Will Hewitt

Our screening of Long Live My Happy Head on Sun 10 October will be followed by a live Q&A with directors Austen McCowan and Will Hewitt, plus special guests. 

New documentary Long Live My Happy Head from directors Austen McCowan and Will Hewitt tells a true story which is triumphant and heart-breaking in equal measure, following comic artist Gordon Shaw as he comes to terms with the reality that he has an inoperable brain tumour. 

“reveals how art, love and a sense of humour can soothe our deepest fears of mortality”

While Long Live My Happy Head is a film about cancer and comic books, it is also a love story, as we journey with Gordon and his long-distance partner Shawn through one of the most difficult times of their lives, including last year’s Covid lockdown. Naming his tumour Rick, Gordon’s lucidity and disarming sense of humour about the gravity of his situation are as inspiring and affirming as they are saddening. McCowan and Hewitt use observational footage, painfully intimate video diary, stylized key interviews, and animations created from Gordon’s comic illustrations to immerse the audience in Gordon’s world, and reveal how art, love and a sense of humour can soothe our deepest fears of mortality and the prospect of losing the people we care most about.