Lights, Camera, Action: Tinsel Town

Role Models

We're nominating these six Cleveland actors as our favorites on the big screen. Tweet us your pick using #HollywoodCLE.

Halle Berry: The Bedford native became the first African-American woman to win an Oscar for a leading role with her performance in Monster's Ball and is one of 75 Bond girls, starring as Jinx in Die Another Day.

Class Act

While we don't have
Bette Midler to sing, these
late acting greats who lived
in Northeast Ohio are the
wind beneath our wings.

Dorothy Dandridge
Margaret Hamilton
Bob Hope
Dean Martin
Paul Newman

Hal Holbrook: Known for playing Deep Throat in All the President's Men, the Cleveland native received an Oscar nomination for Into the Wild, making him the oldest nominee in the history of the supporting role category.

Terrence Howard: Nominated for an Oscar for his performance in Hustle and Flow, the Cleveland native has a vast catalog of dramatic turns in films such as Crash, Lee Daniels' The Butler and Mr. Holland's Opus.

Molly Shannon: The Saturday Night Live alum and Shaker Heights native leaves us laughing with breakout character roles in films such as Never Been Kissed and Analyze This — but we love her most in the starring role of Superstar.

Fred Willard: As everyone's favorite character actor, this Shaker Heights native and funnyman is best known for his roles in Christopher Guest mockumentaries such as Best in Show, For Your Consideration and A Mighty Wind.

Debra Winger: With three Oscar-nominated performances for An Officer and a Gentleman, Terms of Endearment and Shadowlands, this Cleveland Heights native is currently working on Boychoir with Dustin Hoffman.

Celluloid kings

They create visual poems, not linear stories, and they test the limits of what's possible in film. John Ewing, director of the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, picks his three favorite local experimental filmmakers.

Bruce Checefsky: The longtime director of the Cleveland Institute of Art's Reinberger Galleries and a photographer with work in museums worldwide, Checefsky has found an unusual niche in film. "He's been essentially remaking or making films that were either lost or destroyed or conceived of but never realized," Ewing says. Many are from Eastern Europe in the '20s, '30s and '40s. The cinematheque shows all eight of his shorts, including new release Witch's Cradle, in a 105-minute program April 3.

Robert Banks: Like Stan Brakhage, one of the deans of American experimental cinema, Banks scratches, paints, freezes and otherwise abuses film stock to create animated shapes and colors. "They're frenetic, like light shows, but they really work," says Ewing. Outlet questions notions of female beauty by showing women going to extremes to alter their appearances. Banks' dramatic camera angles and sound loops evoke a sense of alarm.

Richard Myers: A retired Kent State University professor, Myers ranks as one of the leading experimental filmmakers of the '60s and '70s. The Academy Film Archive is adding many of his films, which are based on his dreams. Monstershow, for example, was filmed in part in the Flats and inspired by classic horror stories. "You would think that films about private dreams would be impenetrable, private works, but they're not," says Ewing, "maybe because we all have the same kind of dreams or same yearnings."

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