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Winner Flaherty Award:
Best Single Documentary
Nominated for RTS Best Documentary
Nominated for RTS Eductation Awards
Channel 4

1 x 50 minutes
Transmitted June 2005
A Century Films production for
Channel 4

Original music
Richard Heacock
Chris Bairstow
Executive producer
Brian Hill
James Gold
Zac Beattie
Filmed and directed by
Jonathan Smith



Make Me Normal (2005)

What is it like not to understand the world you live in? What happens when the simplest daily tasks lead to anxiety, frustration and even violence?

Make Me Normal is a film about another world: the autistic world. Autism is a condition of the mind that affects the way you communicate with the world around you. In Britain, over half a million people have autism. There is no cure.

In the film, four of the most able students at Spa School in London take us on a moving journey into their world, to show us what it is like to grow up with autism. Filmed over several months, with unique access to one of Britain’s largest state schools for children with autism, Make Me Normal follows these students as they learn to live with their condition.

Moneer (12) has a form of autism called Asperger’s Syndrome. When he loses his mother to cancer, the school’s struggle to help him deal with his feelings and to manage his violent behaviour, is on a knife-edge. Roxanne (12) just wants to be a normal teenager but her realisation that autism is for life is extremely painful. Roy (18) is desperately trying to make sense of the world during his last year at school, but what he really wants is a girlfriend. And Esther (18), our guide, has a special gift for explaining the autistic world.

Photograph: Phil Fiske

The Guardian.

 "An exceptional insight into the nature of autism through the eyes of those who live with the condition."
Daily Telegraph.

A "wonderfully affecting film… congratulations to all involved."
The Independent.

"Strikingly uplifting, almost life-affirming"
Financial Times