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Cleveland International Film Festival 44 To Screen Online In April

Marcie Goodman began grieving when the Cleveland International Film Festival was canceled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

"We have to honor that and we have to give ourselves time to experience those feelings," the CIFF executive director said.

Soon after the March 11 press conference when Mayor Frank Jackson and Goodman made the announcement, she and her CIFF staff realized they weren't the only ones in mourning.

"People from every portion and part of the festival were just so supportive in terms of what they were saying... how much they care about the festival and how meaningful it is to them and how sad they are too," Goodman said

One of the main questions CIFF staffers received since the announcement: Will the festival go online?

With the financial support of the festival's board of directors the answer today is: Yes.


One of the films screening online for CIFF44 Streams is the Polish film "Corpus Christi" [Film Movement]

Wednesday the festival announced CIFF Streams, an online subscription service offering access to many of the CIFF44 films for approximately two weeks in April.

"We have to reach out to every distributor and every filmmaker in the festival to get their permission, and I do know the response has been so positive," she said.

More information in terms of film details, pricing and the date for the online launch will be released soon.


One of the films screening online for CIFF44 Streams is "A Good Woman is Hard to Find" [Film Movement]

On its website, the festival also released the CIFF44 trailer produced by Fusion Filmworks set to the song "Miles to Go" by local musicians Astronymer and Jul Big Green.

"[Tonight] would've been opening night of the 44th annual Cleveland International Film Festival and so we still want to celebrate," Goodman said.

Adding to the online celebration, the festival posted CIFF Speaks, its podcast series, from Dee Perry and Aaron Spears, which will focus on the films available for streaming.


Dee Perry and Aaron Spears interview filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal during CIFF43 in 2019 [Lindsey Poyar]

In the first episode, Perry and Spears speak with CIFF artistic director Bill Guentzler and marketing and media director Debby Samples.

"They talk about how the festival went from shut down to show time," Goodman said.

In the meantime, as CIFF fans await details for the online launch in April, the festival is encouraging people to scan a list of CIFF films from the past three years currently available to watch on streaming services.

The 44th annual Cleveland International Film Festival will screen online starting in April.


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Cleveland International Film Festival 44 To Screen Online In April