Two Stories of Sheer Talent from Northern Ohio

The Soloist, starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr., opens today at a cineplex near you. It tells the true story of Cleveland native Nathaniel Ayers, a gifted young musician whose life falls into chaos when he is overtaken by schizophrenia.

Foxx plays Ayers and Downey Jr. plays journalist Steve Lopez, an L.A. Times columnist who encounters Ayers, now homeless, in downtown L.A. Lopez takes on Ayers' story - not believing, at first, that this talented homeless man once went to the Julliard School in New York - and the two form a bond of friendship unexpected by both.

Scenes of Ayers childhood (I believe) were shot in Cleveland last winter. Foxx was on hand for the shoot. 

Another film coming soon and about a Northern Ohio phenomenon is More Than a Game. The documentary paints a portrait of Cleveland Cavaliers great LeBron James during his days at St. Vincent-St. Mary in Akron, Ohio.

More than that, it tells James' story, of coming from a difficult life to find friendship and family among his high school basketball teammates. The trailer is slick and the film looks like it could be the next Hoop Dreams. Certainly, it looks like it could have been a feature film.

And with talk that James is shopping a TV show based on his life growing up in Akron, you can be sure that this documentary would serve as a great pilot.

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