“Females” is the first film created from the mind of Crazy Dee and is based on true events. “Females” tells the story of Crazy Dee, his CD Shop and the various casts of female characters whom have patronized his business for more than 15 years. Crazy Dee opens his CD Shop daily for business, and never really knows what the day will bring...
The city music video is also being played pre-game by the Cincinnati Reds and on the big screens at Fountain Square and Washington Park (before movie night) by 3CDC.
“I was never the type to wait to have the credible crowd endorse me to do something. Not having them doesn’t discredit my film... It’s not about who’s in it. It’s about the point the people are addressing." - Gezus Zaire
Journalist, filmmaker not ready to pull the plug on EC
By RHONDA CROWDER
With John D. Rockfeller as a resident, East Cleveland used to be one of the wealthiest communities in Northeast Ohio. But, through the years, it’s lost its luster and is generally frowned upon. Some don’t even want to drive through the city that sits just east of University Circle.
At the same time, several people recognize the legacy and see its potential with hopes of bringing the city back to its glory. One such person is Gezus Zaire, journalist, filmmaker and native East Clevelander.
Zaire recently produced a film titled, “Operation Save East Cleveland.” It will be shown at the main branch of the Cleveland Public Library this upcoming Saturday.
During an interview with Zaire, who currently lives in Columbus, he discussed what inspired him to do this film.
“Every time I come back to the neighborhood, it would sicken me to see how it seemed to get worse and worse and worse and worse,” he said.
He went on to say the blight depressed him and the apathy among some residents made matters worse. “People expect that’s how it’s supposed to look because poor Black people live there,” said Zaire.
Zaire was also watching the movie, “Once Brothers,” featuring former NBA players Darzen Petrovich and Zlade Divac with his wife – who is also from East Cleveland.
The movie, examining their war-torn homelands, reminded Zaire of his hometown.
“I told my wife, that looks like East Cleveland.”
He said East Cleveland looks life a disaster scene from a movie, like a Third World Country.
“Operation Save East Cleveland” features average everyday people who are doing different things in the community or work there. They talk about their experiences, the past and what’s going on now. They also discuss what they feel needs to be done.
“The film was created to bring awareness to a city that’s rich in heritage and history,” said Zaire. “We want to use this film as a showcase of people who feel like the city has been neglected.”
Zaire believes viewers will have mixed emotions about the film. “I’m not trying to tell people how to feel,” he said. “Depending on who they are, people are going to feel different. If they want to help East Cleveland, they will. I want to help East Cleveland. I’m doing my part by making this film. But, solutions will come when people get hit in the face.”
According to Zaire, some may feel like East Cleveland is too far gone but he thinks that “it’s not just one solution that’s going to fix East Cleveland.”
Personally, he feels East Cleveland has been left for dead and can get worse.
“How can you go from being the richest of the rich to the place where no one wants to live?” he said.
Zaire found it important to mention that he got a Facebook message that criticized him about how the film didn’t include the Oppressed People’s Nation, an East Cleveland based activist group. “This is what we face as a people…” he said.
“I was never the type to wait to have the creditable crowd endorse me to do something. Not having them doesn’t discredit my film and it doesn’t discredit the Oppressed People’s Nation. I respect what they do. It’s not about who’s in it. It’s about the point the people are addressing,” said Zaire.
Jahja Ling conducts The Cleveland Orchestra in concert featuring Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony at the Blossom Festival on July 28 at 8 p.m.
At 7 p.m., the Kent/Blossom Chamber Orchestra, led by James Feddeck, will perform Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances and Schubert’s Symphony No. 4 (“Tragic”).