To finish his documentary on iconic filmmaker Robert Banks, Cleveland director needs your help

Cleveland filmmaker Robert Banks

You’ll get few arguments from Cleveland filmmakers about Robert Banks’ icon status. He is known far and wide in the Northeast Ohio film community and throughout the indie film world. The Plain Dealer called him “Cleveland’s premiere indie filmmaker,” and his movies have played all over the globe.

Now Banks, best known for his work behind the camera, is the subject of a documentary, Robert Banks: We'll Talk About That Later, by fellow Cleveland filmmaker Mike Wendt. 


“I met Robert while attending films at the Cleveland Cinematheque,” says Wendt. “And I eventually worked with him on Made In Cleveland.”


That led to further collaboration, and Wendt says he was floored by the creativity Banks injected into his films. It was enough that Wendt felt it was time Banks’ story was told. 


Mike Wendt, right, chats with Robert Banks
Wendt’s documentary is near completion, but there are a few final touches to make. For that, Wendt is hoping fellow cinephiles can help out. The filmmaker is hosting a “work in progress” sneak peek screening of the documentary, along with Banks’ award-winning short,
X: The Baby Cinema and Q&A with Banks and Wendt, at no cost to participants. The event takes place Saturday, Oct. 10, at 78th Street Studios Ramp Level from 3 to 7 p.m. Proper social distancing will take place, and Wendt is hosting four hour-long screenings with limited seating to ensure everyone is as safe as possible. 

“We’re still in post production,” Wendt says. “And while we’re gathering feedback to help us choose our final steps, what I really hope people walk away with is an understanding of just how passionate an artist must be if they want to see their vision come to life, conquering the peaks and valleys one might face.” 


Robert Banks: We'll Talk About That Later catches up Banks as he nears the end of production on Paper Shadows, a feature film the artist worked on for more than 10 years. The film premiered in 2018 at the Cleveland Cinematheque. It’s described as “both a trippy, cinematic, b&w tear-sheet collage and a manifesto of urban Midwestern angst.” 


The documentary received a Satellite Grant from SPACES Cleveland and The Andy Warhol Foundation.


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