Cleveland's interesting ethnic neighborhoods, downtown streets, and sports arenas have been the backdrop for numerous major movies. Below is a list of our favorite movies filmed in Northeast Ohio.
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This movie was the first of many pairing Jack Lemmon and Walter Matheau and the results are brilliant. The film, directed by Billy Wilder, features the now-classic repartee between Lemmon and Mattheau. Mattheau suffered a major heart attack after filming, but he won a best supporting actor Oscar for his performance. The film includes scenes filmed at St. Vincent Charity Hospital in Cleveland's Ohio City neighborhood as well as the old Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
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This "feel good" Christmas classic about Christmas in the 1940s, starring Darren McGavin and Peter Billingsly, was shot all over Cleveland: At the former Higbee's Department Store on Public Square, on W. 11th Street, and at various locations in the Tremont neighborhood. In late 2006, the house where this movie was filmed opened as an attraction.
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Light of Day (1987)
This, somewhat forgettable, film starring Michael J. Fox and Joan Jett is still fun for Clevelanders because of its local settings and references. The movie, about a brother-sister rock and roll duo, features scenes filmed in Cleveland Heights and Cleveland's University Circle neighborhood. There's even a glimpse of Akron native, Trent Reznor, right before he burst to fame with "Nine Inch Nails."Continue to 5 of 22 below.
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This fun film about a (sort of) fictional version of the Cleveland Indians in the 1980s features Charlie Sheen and Tom Berenger as the last-place baseball team whose new (female) owner wants them to lose so that she can sell the team. Of course, they rally and win. Some scenes were shot at the old Cleveland Municipal Stadium (although the majority feature Milwaukee's stadium).
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Happy Gilmore (1996)
This light comedy, starring Adam Sandler, tells the story of an out-of-work hockey player who tries to make it as a PGA golfer. Much of the movie is shot in and around Cleveland.
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This thriller starring Harrison Ford opens with shots of Cleveland's City Hall building and scenes from Case Western Reserve University. The movie purports to be in Moscow, but it's actually right here in Cleveland.
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Based on a true story, Antwone Fisher tells about the life of a Cleveland boy, raised in foster care, who later, as a Navy seaman, explores and overcomes his troubled childhood. Portions of the film were shot in Cleveland.Continue to 9 of 22 below.
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This movie, starring Paul Giamatti as the Cleveland comic book writer, Harvey Pekar, was filmed entirely in the greater Cleveland area. The movie was nominated for an Academy Award and won the Sundance Jury Award.
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A more recent addition to the list of movies filmed in Cleveland is Spider-man 3 (2007), with portions filmed along Euclid Avenue in downtown Cleveland.
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The Soloist (2009)
The Soloist stars Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Foxx in a story about a Cleveland man, Nathaniel Ayers (Downey), from the Hough neighborhood who learned to play the string bass at the Cleveland Music School Settlement, earning a scholarship to New York's Julliard School. Before he could fulfill his promise, however, he suffers a mental collapse and falls to the depths of schizophrenia.
The screenwriter, Steve Lopez (Foxx) meets Ayers living in a tunnel in Los Angeles and tries to help him with mixed results.
Portions of the film, released in early 2009, were filmed in Cleveland's Hough neighborhood, along the Detroit-Carnegie Bridge, and in the Flats.Continue to 13 of 22 below.
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Falling Backwards (2011)
Produced by Cleveland-based Giant Leap Pictures, "Falling Backwards" is the story of one father and son's journey through addiction and recovery. The movie was filmed in and around Cleveland. A portion of the film's profits are slated to go to NE Ohio's Glenbeigh Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center. The movie stars Cleveland native, Robert Piper, and Thomas Dubyna.
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Boot Tracks (2011)
"Boot Tracks," a psychological thriller based on a novel by Matthew F. Jones, was also filmed in and around Cleveland. The low-budget film stars Michelle Monaghan and Stephen Dorff.
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This drama, produced by Chagrin Falls native Tyler Davidson, premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. The film, which stars Michael Shannon, was filmed in Grafton, Chardon, LaGrange, Elyria, and Oberlin.Continue to 17 of 22 below.
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This classic action film, starring Robert Downey Jr. and Scarlett Johanssen, was partially filmed in downtown Cleveland, along East Ninth Street and Euclid Avenue.
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Fun Size (2012)
This teen movie, starring Nickolodean's Victoria Justice and Chelsea Handler, was filmed in Cleveland Height's Coventry neighborhood along Fairmount Boulevard and at sites in Beachwood and Lakewood. The film takes place on Halloween when a teen girl loses track of her little brother.
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I, Alex Cross (2012)
"I, Alex Cross," based on the James Patterson Alex Cross series of mystery novels, was filmed in and around Cleveland including the Warehouse District during August and September of 2011. The movie stars Tyler Perry in the title role.
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Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
The Winter Soldier was filmed in and around Cleveland in spring and summer, 2013.Continue to 21 of 22 below.
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Draft Day (2014)
This Kevin Costner film was filmed in and around Cleveland during spring and summer 2013. Sites include a house on South Park Blvd. in Shaker Heights, the "Tilted Kilt" restaurant/bar in downtown Cleveland and several locations in Berea. Unlike many other movies filmed in Cleveland, the city is not being used as a stand-in for New York City or another metropolis. In "Draft Day" Cleveland is Cleveland.
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Wake is an action movie starrirng Bruce Willis and Ellen Burstyn that filmed in the greater Cleveland region in 2015.