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Arts and Entertainment

Northeast Ohio is highlighted at the Cleveland International Film Festival
The 37th annual festival spreads to Oberlin and Akron, and includes NE Ohio films

Mark Urycki
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The 37th Cleveland International Film Festival kicks off Wednesday evening. For the first time, the festival will stretch to 12 days. The opening movie is “Kings of Summer,” a film from Chagrin Falls producer Tyler Davidson that was shot in Geauga County. As WKSU’s Mark Urycki reports, it’s one of several films at the festival with an Ohio connection.

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The Cleveland International Film Festival is taking over Ohio. But in a good way.

This year’s CIFF is not only longer than usual, it’s wider. That is, besides the main venue at Tower City Cinemas, the festival will play at six other locations. You can see a film at the Shaker Cinemas and the Cedar Lee on the east side,  while movies will play at the Capitol on the west side and the Apollo Theater in Oberlin. 

What’s more, programmers Bill Guenztler and Mallory Martin say a whole day of films is planned for Akron on Thursday, April 11. It's called Day and Knight in Akron.

"We're screening eight films throughout the day," Guenztler says. "We just want to have a bigger footprint in Akron because we know that a lot of Akronites come up to Cleveland for the film festival." 

The Akron Art Museum and the main Akron Summit County Public Library will both be showing flicks in their theaters. You can walk from one to the other and both venues will have food available. 

Guenztler and Martin focus with us on what the CIFF calls "Local Heroes."  Those are films made by Ohioans or about Ohioans or filmed in Ohio.

For example, one of the films playing in Akron is "Underdog" by Canton native Doug Dearth about a high school football team. Guenzler says, "Think of a film like 'Rudy,' where it's inspiring and they're taking on their crosstown rivals."

Then there's "Ohio Shorts," a collection of short films by Ohio film makers. Some are made by people outside Ohio but filmed here and feature local stories.
WKSU members can get discounts on tickets. Details here

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CIFF programmers Bill Guenstler and Mallory Martin discuss some of their favorite films at the this year's festival.

CIFF programmers Bill Guenstler and Mallory Martin discuss some of their favorite films at the this year's festival.

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