On Demand Lesson Plan

Running Time: 15:31 mins
Behind The Scenes: 8:00 mins

Speechless Lesson Plan

This film was funded by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture

Exit Interviews


Desmond has a secret he cannot share with anyone.  His grades are slipping, rumors are swirling and he feels powerless, especially when he sees his sister being hurt too. With the support of his father and a new friend, Desmond is able to tell his story of being sexually assaulted and end the cycle of abuse. Desmond regains his power when he uses his voice.

Speechless examines sexual assault and recovery through power / powerlessness, empathy, communication, and gender stereotypes. Check out our Speechless Resources page here.

Speechless was written by Roxanne Lasker-Hall when she was a junior at the Cleveland School of the Arts, in Cleveland, OH and directed by Karyn Kusama (Girlfight and Jennifer’s Body).


The i Will End Sexual Violence social media campaign is a Scenarios USA advocacy and resources project, led by young people from Cleveland, OH, that asks individuals across the U.S. to name the role that they will play to END SEXUAL VIOLENCE. Click here to view the campaign and check out the resources for survivors and violence prevention, and see our own IwillESV page for more info.

Greater Cleveland Speechless Coalition

The Scenarios USA Speechless Coalition is a group of experts, community members educators and youth who provide input and advice on the film’s script and advice and support in the distribution of the film into the Greater Cleveland community and nationwide.  The Speechless Coalition continues to grow and currently includes:

  • The Cuyahoga County Family and Children First Council
  • George Gund Foundation
  • Cleveland Rape Crisis Center
  • United Church of Christ
  • Cuyahoga Arts and Culture
  • Cleveland Metropolitan School District
  • Starting Point
  • ADAMHS Board
  • Youth from the Greater Cleveland area

Contact Steph Wahome, Scenarios USA Greater Cleveland Coordinator, for more information: steph@scenariosusa.org.

Check out our Educators Blog post, “7 Ways to Help a Teen Survivor of Sexual Abuse”.