FACT: The films at the Cleveland International Film Festival (CIFF) are definitely not your average multi-million-dollar blockbusters shown at big-box suburban cinemaplexes on any given Saturday night. Instead, you’re exposed to everything from documentaries covering humanitarian issues and blocks of hilarious 10-minute shorts to foreign flicks and even films screened in virtual reality.
With 121 features and 199 shorts from 67 countries, conceivably, one could watch a different film for 12+ hours every day for 11 days straight. And, it’s not uncommon to catch a few festivalgoers who call off work for a solid week to enjoy much of the event. [Hey…you should, too.]
Widely recognized as a “filmmakers festival,” CIFF will draw filmmakers from all around the world, with more being added every day. What’s better, festival goers at CIFF get the opportunity to chat with the filmmakers immediately following the screenings.
If you’re a newb to the film fest scene, no worries. CIFF organizes many of its films into categories called Sidebars, which help first-time festivalgoers to select films based on interest. Along with newer Sidebars like Indigenous Cinema and Parability Cinema, you've got all the old standbys like After Hours, Asian Cinema and Black Cinema, to name a few. See all Sidebars here.
Unlike other film festivals around the world, all of CIFF’s film screenings happen in Playhouse Square in Downtown Cleveland. Our beloved theater district is the largest you'll find outside of New York, and its five theaters make for one incredible film festival experience. You're right in the thick of it too, close to first class accommodations like the Crowne Plaza Cleveland Playhouse Square, Hilton Cleveland Downtown and others, as well as great restaurants like Cibreo, Republic Food + Drink, Yours Truly, Hofbrauhaus Cleveland and Marble Room Steaks & Raw Bar.
It all happens March 22 – April 1 in the heart of Downtown Cleveland at Playhouse Square, followed by CIFF 47 Streams April 2 - 9.
Tickets are on sale now. For more information, visit ClevelandFilm.org.