13 Reasons Why is the new Netflix series that has become an overnight success. Released March 31, it has already garnered a huge fandom, including socialite Kylie Jenner who has tweeted about her love for the main character. The powerful series, which speaks to modern day issues like sexual assault, teen suicide, and bullying has brought awareness to the seriousness of depression and the risk of suicide in a major way.
The series itself was a passion project for mega popstar Selena Gomez, who served as the executive producer of the series. Gomez bought the rights to 13 Reasons Why several years ago in order to turn it into a film or TV show. Originally, the star had even considered playing Hannah Baker, but was worried that her fame might get in the way of the audience’s experience. Instead, she stayed behind the scenes and stopped in at the set when she had time.
Selena Gomez created 13 Reasons Why partially because of her own battle with depression and anxiety, which she says has been brought about by her diagnosis and battle with the autoimmune disorder lupus SLE.
In honor of the show’s powerful message, Selena Gomez teamed up with Tommy Dorfman, who plays Ryan in 13 Reasons Why and Alisha Boe, who plays Jessica Davis, to get matching tattoos just three days ago in Los Angeles. The three of them spent the day together in Los Angeles, and it looks like they have a friendship beyond that of just being on set together.
The 13 Reasons Why trio decided on semi-colon tattoos, which have a deeper and more special meaning than many people realize. The semi-colon movement began in 2013 by Amy Bleul to represent a battle with depression. The punctuation mark is to serve as a reminder to anyone contemplating suicide that your story is not over. Just like authors use a semi-colon to stop one thought and start another, it serves a reminder the next part of your life will unfold soon.
Unfortunately, Amy Bleul lost her battle to depression and committed suicide just a few weeks ago at the age of 31.
Still, the message remains strong and is one that the 13 Reasons Why cast hopes inspire others going through a rough time.
Tommy Dorfman explained the tattoo and the significance it has for him on his Instagram.
“The ; symbol stands for an end of one thought and a beginning of another. Instead of a period, authors use the semicolon to continue a sentence. For us, it means a beginning of another chapter in life, in lieu of ending your life. I struggled with addiction and depression issues through high school and early college. I reached out and asked for help. At the time, I thought my life was over, I thought I’d never live past the age of 21. Today I’m grateful to be alive, in this new chapter of life in recovery, standing with my colleagues and friends, making art that helps other people,” he wrote.
Selena Gomez shared an Instagram story of herself and the 13 Reasons Why group getting their tattoos on the day it occurred. She has since shared a picture of herself, Dorfman and Boe posing next to a billboard for the TV show in downtown LA. She gushed over those who worked on the show and the reactions of the shows’ fans.
“Wish the rest of the crew was with us today. Overwhelmed with the response and love @13reasonswhy is receiving. Thank you to each beautiful person who has watched and talked about the message of our show,” she wrote.
The cast has now been sharing some of their on-set photos with their fans on their Instagram pages, presumably after having to be hush-hush about what took place on set until the show was released. You can check out some of the photos below.
[Featured Image by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Netflix/AP Images]