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Cleveland film fest will start with a 'Happy Ending'

February 17, 2014 - Andy Gray
A Scottish romantic comedy will open the 38th Cleveland International Film Festival.

“Not Another Happy Ending” stars Karen Gillan (“Dr. Who”) as a novelist facing writer’s block now that she’s successful. Stanley Weber plays her struggling publisher, who realizes she can only write when she’s unhappy. But the more he tries to keep her unhappy, the more he realizes he’s in love.

Director John McKay and costar Henry Ian Cusick, who played Desmond Hume on “Lost,” are scheduled to attend the opening night gala on March 19 with other special guests to be announced.

The move already has played in the UK, where it received mixed reviews, based on the ones collected at Rotten Tomatoes.

Variety called it, “A trifling comedy about writer's block that aims for a blend of Richard Curtis-style cheeriness and arch literary satire, and winds up mostly drawing a blank.” But according to ViewLondon, it’s “Ultimately worth seeing thanks to a charming lead performance from Karen Gillan, strong comic support from Iain De Caestecker and a handful of decent gags.”

The logical choice for the opening night film seemed to be “Draft Day,” which was filmed in Cleveland last summer and stars Kevin Costner as the GM of the Cleveland Browns. (“Major League” opened the film fest back in 1989). It’s opens nationally on April 11, and March 19 may have been earlier than Lionsgate/Summit wanted to publicly show the film. Maybe March 30 would work better as a closing night film (that’s not a tease; it’s simply idle speculation).

Tickets for the opening night gala, the film and the post-screening party, are $125 ($100 for Cleveland International Film Festival members).

The full schedule will be announced on Feb. 21. Tickets will go on sale to CIFF members on Feb. 28 and to the general public on March 7.


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Stanley Weber, left, and Karen Gillan star in "Not Another Happy Ending." (Synchronicity Films)


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