Entertainers discuss disability representation in Hollywood

In this combination photo, Marlee Matlin, from left, arrives at the 38th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards on June 19th, 2011 in Las Vegas, Millicent Simmonds arrives at the 24th annual Critics’ Choice Awards on Jan. 13, 2019, in Santa Monica, Calif., Danny Woodburn attends the premiere of “Dead Ant” on Oct. 10, 2017, in Los Angeles and Maysoon Zayid attends the Women’s Media Awards on Oct. 22, 2019, in New York. Matlin, Simmonds, Woodburn and Zayid are just a few of the Hollywood insiders who participated in a series of virtual panels Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, examining the state of disability representation in Hollywood. The series is hosted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in celebration of the 30th anniversary year of the Americans with Disabilities Act. (AP Photo)AP












SOURCE: Cleveland.com | Associated Press
Oct 27, 2020

It’s an old cliche that if an actor wants to win an Oscar, he or she should consider playing a character with a disability. And it’s not entirely unfounded advice: 61 actors have been nominated for playing a character with a disability and 27 have walked away winners. But only two of those actors actually had a disability — Marlee Matlin in “Children of a Lesser God” and Harold Russell in “The Best Years of Our Lives.”

That’s just one of the things that needs to change, according to a group of entertainment industry professionals with disabilities including actors Danny Woodburn, “A Quiet Place’s” Millicent Simmonds and “Peanut Butter Falcon’s” Zack Gottsagen.



Emmy Nomination for Cleveland-Based Hemlock Films series ‘The Restorers’

The Restorers – Season 1 promotional trailer from Hemlock Films on Vimeo.

SOURCE: Hemlock Films | Adam White
October 20, 2020

The Restorers EP1 – Living History has been nominated for an Emmy award in the category of ‘Best Documentary – Historical’. The Emmy awards will be held in December of this year.

The Restorers is a documentary series, offering a glimpse into the world of antique aircraft restoration. ‘Episode 1 – Living History’ follows the historic airshow act Tora Tora Tora, Bomber Crew Fantasy Camp, and the WWII Airborne Demonstration Team.

The Restorers is distributed by American Public Television. The host PBS station for the series in WUCF-PBS Orlando, FL. The Emmy nomination was made by the Suncoast NATAS Emmy Chapter.

The Restorers is produced by Hemlock Films, based in Cleveland, Ohio.

For more information, visit www.TheRestorers.com.

Filming in Cleveland has started on movie about Rickey Jackson, who spent 39 years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit

The upcoming film “Lovely Jackson” focuses on Rickey Jackson’s struggle to survive a wrongful 1975 murder conviction, death row, and thirty-nine years in Ohio’s most dangerous prisons, the movie’s producer says.










SOURCE:  Cleveland.com | Joey Morona
October 21, 2020

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Production has started on “Lovely Jackson,” an upcoming film about Rickey Jackson, the Cleveland man who spent 39 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit.

“It’s a tragic and unbelievable true story that spans nearly five decades in Cleveland,” says the film’s producer Matt Waldeck. “It’s also a very cool synergy between a local non-profit, local production company, and local university during a difficult COVID-19 time.”

Waldeck, whose production company Zodiac Features brought the Helen Hunt horror film “I See You” to shoot here in 2018, describes “Lovely Jackson” as a docudrama: very stylized with traditional documentary elements embedded within and narrated by Jackson, who serves as a producer on the movie.



Zodiac Features and CSU’s School of Film & Media Arts Team Up for New Documentary Film About Exonerated Prisoner Rickey Jackson

Courtesy of Brokaw

SOURCE:  Cleveland Scene | Jeff Niesel
October 20, 2020

Founded in Cleveland, Ohio by Jillian Wolstein, the mission of H.E.L.P. is to “provide hope, education, love and protection to people facing seemingly insurmountable circumstances by way of human injustices and challenges.” H.E.L.P. also owns and operates the Flats East Bank restaurant Truman’s 216. All the profits from Truman’s 216 go towards helping people in need, and the restaurant also provides meals to local alternative housing shelters.

Now, H.E.L.P. has funded Lovely Jackson, a new film from Zodiac Features, the Cleveland and Los Angeles-based production company behind the 2019 thriller I See You, and Cleveland State University’s School of Film and Media Arts.

Greater Cleveland Sports Commission sets virtual film series focusing on LGBTQIA athletes

Several of the athletes featured in “Alone in the Game” are – clockwise from top left – Ryan O’Callaghan, Robbie Rogers, Jason Collins and Megan Rapinoe.








SOURCE:  Cleveland.com | Marc Bona
October 14, 2020

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Greater Cleveland Sports Commission has scheduled OUT Competing: A virtual film series celebrating LGBTQIA athletes.

The series will screen Wednesday, Nov. 11 to Sunday, Nov. 15 via digital streaming.

The commission is planning the event in conjunction with the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland’s Trans in the CLE! event. The series will provide access to three feature documentaries focusing on obstacles faced by LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, intersex, and asexual or allied) athletes.



Cleveland TV Station Producing Local Horror Film Show

WUAB is bringing a local Cleveland-based horror film and humor program. (Shutterstock)








SOURCE: Patch.com | Chris Mosby
October 12, 2020

CLEVELAND – A Cleveland TV station will turn Saturdays into spooky, Halloween-themed evenings for Northeast Ohioans this month.

“The Big Bad B-Movie Show” will launch on CW 43 WUAB on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 8 p.m. The program will feature vintage horror movie-themed segments, hosted and produced by Zachariah Durr and Laura Wimbels, and a cast of rotating guests.

The premiere episode will feature the 1959 film “Attack of the Giant Leeches.”




Film, commercial industry showing signs of COVID-19 recovery in Northeast Ohio

The Session | Mike Wendt








SOURCE: Cleveland Jewish News | Jane Kaufman
October 8, 2020

While two films in Cleveland shut down after COVID-19 swept through the city this past spring, the industry appears to be showing encouraging signs of recovery.

Evan Miller, president of the Greater Cleveland Film Commission, said he’s optimistic that with the release of more than $20 million in 30% tax credits in 2021, the film industry will recover locally.

Meantime, several commercials are in production in Cleveland and its surroundings, Miller said.



NATO Renews Call To #SaveYourCinema, Asks Moviegoers To Send Half A Million Letters To Congress


SOURCE: Deadline.com | Anthony D’Alessandro
October 8, 2020

The National Association of Theatre Owners urged Congress again Thursday to #SaveYourCinema and pass relief for cinemas that are struggling to survive during the pandemic. The exhibition lobbyist group is asking moviegoers nationwide to urge D.C. lawmakers with a goal of reaching a half-million letters sent.

Already, NATO’s #SaveYourCinema campaign has triggered 100,000 people across the country to send more than 300,000 letters to Congress in support of aid to movie theaters.



Atlas Cinemas uses some ‘plot twists’ to avoid sad endings of other chains

Atlas Cinemas allowing customers to rent theaters for private screenings and parties (Source: Vic Gideon)







SOURCE: Cleveland 19 News | Vic Gideon
October 6, 2020

Cleveland, OH (WOIO) – Hollywood had delayed many big movie openings, like the James Bond movie “No Time to Die,” keeping many theater chains in suspense.

“Everybody needs an uptick,” says Chris Baxter, Operations Manager of Cleveland’s Atlas Cinemas. “I mean, I think every industry now is facing that were we all kind of need that next big thing to help jump-start business a little bit. Yeah, we all look forward to ‘Wonder Woman’ and the next ‘Star Wars’ or whatever.”

The theater is keeping its doors open as it waits for the big releases by showing smaller budget or independent films, or re-releases since it reopened in June after a coronavirus shutdown.

It’s also using a plot twist.



Cleveland International Film Festival Announces 2021 Festival Will Be Virtual

The Cleveland International Film Festival will present its 2021 film selections virtually. (Image courtesy CIFF)








SOURCE: Cleveland.com | Anne Nickoloff, cleveland.com
October 5, 2020

CLEVELAND, Ohio — The Cleveland International Film Festival has announced that its 2021 event will go virtual due to concerns surrounding the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The fest is set to take place April 7-20.

The decision follows a challenging year for CIFF; its 2020 event was canceled in March due to the pandemic, and the fest later opened up virtual streaming options for many of its films. CIFF Streams offered hundreds of films and shorts to view at home this year.