Wednesday, November 22, 2006


This time last year I was in Cleveland, Ohio. I had just shot a Christmas film, John vs Laura, and was getting ready for Thanksgiving. Days later, I was back here in the UK, for Christmas and New Year. I miss Cleveland, sometimes - not a popular opinion, I know. The city is hardly a tourist attraction...

But that might change this weekend, to a small degree.

The house in which most of Bob Clark's film A Christmas Story was filmed is a real house in Cleveland. Over the years, it had changed a lot, but now it has been restored to it's movie ways by a truly avid - and entrepreneurial - fan of the film, Brian Jones.

The house is open to the public from this Saturday. Can it succeed in drawing tourist attention? Jones thinks so:

"Once, when we were working, these college kids showed up in a car. They had driven nine hours one way just to see the house. Star Trek has Trekkies, I have Ralphies. I'm a Ralphie myself."

For those of you who don't know, Ralphie is the lead character of A Christmas Story, a BB-gun coveting, Milky Bar Kid-looking young 'un, whose older self narrates the nostalgiac, 40s-set film.

I wish Jones the best of luck - Cleveland could certainly use any tourist dollars he brings in.

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