: Documentary Short
GENRE: Documentary
STATUS: In Distribution


A groundbreaking point-of-view journey into a non-fluent speaker's world. 14 year old Emma challenges societal judgement surrounding autism... one keystroke at a time.


For years, Emma struggled to communicate her feelings, her needs, and her fears, to friends and family. It was a difficult time in which her intelligence, and desire to connect, was continually underestimated. Two years ago, for the first time in Emma's life, her true voice was finally heard when she began to type. Using this tool, Emma has defied all expectations and is finally able to have her thoughts expressed and understood by those around her. Having found her voice, Emma now advocates nationally for acceptance, tolerance and understanding.

This is Emma’s debut as co-director.


This documentary comes at a time when the increased understanding and acceptance of autism has become a collective responsibility. Yet, more often than not, the autism narrative is told from the point of view of parents, caretakers and medical professionals rather than those who contend with it personally. For far too long, autism has been largely defined by non-autistic people. It's time for change.

Our goal for Unspoken is to reshape the public’s perception of autism: removing the stigma and celebrating our incredible berth of diversity. Emma endeavors to craft this documentary as uplifting and inspiring to the viewer; revealing the beauty of her world despite the obstacles she faces.

Unspoken is about breaking down the barriers of misconception as the line between director, subject and storyteller are blurred, redefined, and crossed entirely with Emma actively leading the charge both behind and in front of the camera. In so doing, we will share a seldom revealed, unique viewpoint. In this film, we express a voice that until now has been unfairly silenced. And together we will foster a spirit of positive change.

Unspoken is a story for anyone who has ever felt out of place, left alone, and felt misunderstood. Through Emma’s eyes, we see ourselves in a new light, and realize the remarkable abilities we all share. That together, we can overcome any obstacle, achieve any goal and arrive at a place of hope, empathy and a deeper acceptance of humanity.



Emma Zurcher-Long is a fourteen-year old Autistic girl living in NYC. She is a public speaker, writer and likes to sing on stage. Emma applauds those who have found, or are in the process of finding, their individual voice, as she has through typing. Emma has had the opportunity to give presentations at conferences and schools around the country. Her writing has been published on her blog, Emma’s Hope Book, Special Parent Magazine and HALO’s 2014 edition of Voices. She would like to continue opening people’s minds to differences.

“You are welcome to follow me on this adventure” - Typed by Emma.

EMMA'S BLOG: http://emmashopebook.com


Julia originally graduated from a Bachelor of Biophysical Science in 2005, majoring in both Neuroscience & Physiology. She has great interest in psychology, the human mind, and telling stories that unite humanity.

With subsequent studies in filmmaking, Julia’s work as a director spans 10 years, including narrative drama, music videos & documentary work that has screened internationally.

Julia is currently directing a global girls-empowerment mini-documentary series.

Find more of Julia's work at www.juliangeow.com


For the past 10 years Geneva has worked in the feature animation, commercial and documentary production world. She is most passionate about the power of human connection, sharing authentic stories and creating platforms to empower others. She is currently working on a short documentary series entitled "WOMAN" and is in the development stages for a feature documentary film.

Geneva was first introduced to Emma and her family 8 years ago and since then has become very close to the Zurcher-Long family. Having witnessed the astonishing breakthrough with Emma’s communication and typing, Geneva felt that it was important to help Emma’s goal of getting people to truly understand what it’s like to be autistic become a reality.

Feel free to visit www.genevapeschka.com to learn more and stay updated with her projects.



Conor is an award winning Irish documentary filmmaker and video editor. His stories, often compelling character studies, explore subjects ranging from gender to performance, which he portrays through film, audio and digital media.

Conor’s work has been aired on WNYC and published on the New York Times, narrative.ly, Surface, Egoïste and Interview magazine. He has made work for such brands as Facebook, Apple, Mercedes Benz and Tiffany & Co.

His documentaries have won awards at the Brooklyn Short Film Festival and the ZERO Film Festival. Conor is also a world traveler and mean fiddler. 


Connect With The Filmmakers:


The Gotham Film & Media Institute - Fiscal Sponsorship Program 2024
2017 40th Mill Valley Film Festival
Awarded the 2017 Positive Images In The Media Award - TASH Conference
2018 ReelAbilities Film Festival Toronto
2018 Albuquerque Film & Music Experience


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