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March 3, 2003 2:00 AM
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Cleveland Fest To Offer Homecoming For "American Splendor"

Cleveland Fest To Offer Homecoming For "American Splendor"

by Wendy Mitchell









Paul Giamatti and Hope Davis in Shari Springer Berman and Bob Pulcini's "American Splendor".

Courtesy of HBO Films

Hot off its award-winning debut at Sundance 2003, "American Splendor" is set to be the opening night film at the 27th Cleveland International Film Festival, which opens March 20. "American Splendor," about the life of comic book writer and Cleveland native Harvey Pekar, was filmed entirely in Cleveland. At the opening night gala on March 20, guests may include Pekar and wife Joyce Brabner, stars Paul Giamatti and Hope Davis, and directors Shari Springer Berman and Bob Pulcini.

Other highlights of the 10-day festival will include a Director's Spotlight on Serbian filmmaker Goran Markovic, the Someone to Watch awards honoring Russian writer/director Alexei Balabanov, Icelandic diretor Agust Gudmundsson, and Danish writer/director Susanne Bier. A tribute to Women Make Movies will include five of the group's films, including the acclaimed new doc "Love and Diane" from Jennifer Dworkin.

The American Independents program will include Kasia Adamik's "Bark!," Ed Solomon's "Levity," Jonathan Karsh's "My Flesh and Blood," D.A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus' "Only the Strong Survive," Jeff Blitz's "Spellbound," Scott Saunders' "The Technical Writer," Bill Siegel and Sam Green's "The Weather Underground," and more.

World Tour films will include Apichatpong Weerasethakul's "Blissfully Yours" (Thailand), Israel Adrian Caetano's "Bolivia" (Argentina), Sven Taddicken's "Getting My Brother Laid" (Germany), Gaspar Noe's "Irreversible" (France), Lukas Moodysson's "Lilya 4-Ever" (Sweden), Fernando Leon de Aranoa's "Mondays in the Sun" (Spain), Ken Loach's "Sweet Sixteen" (U.K.), Bohdan Slama's "Wild Bees" (Czech Republic), and others.

There will be a film competition for 12 Central/Eastern European films. 10 shorts programs will be offered as well. The 6th Midwest Independent Filmmakers Conference will run concurrently from March 28 - 30.

[For more info, please visit: http://www.clevelandfilm.org.]

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