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whale solo LARGE ciff
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Sadly, the end of another great Cleveland International Film Festival has descended upon us like a lead whale ... or a brick rhino. But whether you were on "Team Whale" or "Team Rhino" made no difference, everyone got carried away this year in the very best sense.
As this festival quickly ascends higher and higher on the international film festival food chain, it is garnering well-deserved attention and praise from everywhere. One of the most immediate forms adoration this year came in the form of a grant from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. CIFF was the sole recipient of a multiyear grant from The Academy this year for its FOCUS ON FILMMAKERS program. So congrats to you, CIFF team, for raising the bar for festivals across the nation and globe.
Again this year the festival posted impressive and record-breaking numbers in multiple facets. A 9% increase in attendance over last year made the finally tally 85,019, contributing to the overwhelming support of the patrons in the Challenge Match. This year, the $75K match goal was surpassed in whirlwind for a total of $88,605 ($75K of which will be matched by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture).
On to the winners...
Here are a few of the category winners for this year's 36th Cleveland International Film Festival:
The Roxanne T. Mueller Audience Choice Award for Best Film: Under African Skies (the akronlife sponsored Bill W. was runner-up for this fantastic award!)
The Greg Gund Memorial Standing Up Film Competition: Finding North
Central and Eastern European Competition: Best Intentions
The Nesnandy + Schwartz Documentary Film Competition: Beauty is Embarrassing
American Independent Award Sponsored by Alan and Marta Glazen: Missed Connections
And let's not forget that the akronlife sponsored Bill W. was a festival favorite, winning the Local Heroes Award and posting as runner-up for the The Roxanne T. Mueller Audience Choice Award for Best Film! For a complete of winners in all categories check the fest site here.
While it's a given that you see the above films, here's some to remember for those of you cruising the festival circuit - some of my personal recommends from this years fest: Buddha Mountain, Tyrannosaur, the Dreileben Trilogy, the short films Abiogenesis, diK, and Love is All You Need?
Though we are saying goodnight to the 36th Cleveland International Film Festival, awaiting a glorious 37th, the suspense and excitement for the upcoming Akron Film + Pixel Festival is waiting in the wings.
Please don't forget to thank all of the festival staff for a great year at the Cleveland International Film Festival!!