CLEVELAND, OH – It’s won awards around the globe, now it’s finally coming home.  The documentary film Cleveland vs Wall Street is set to make its U.S. premiere in Cleveland.

Location: Capitol Theater, 1390 West 65th Street, Cleveland, OH 44102

Date: Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Time: 7:00 p.m.

On January 11th 2009, Cleveland, Ohio lawyer Josh Cohen and his partners summoned before the court 21 banks they deemed responsible for the foreclosures that had devastated their city.  But the Wall Street banks fought back. They used every means possible to impede the proceedings.

Cleveland vs Wall Street tells the story of the trial that should have happened. An unscripted trial conducted for cinema, with real lawyers, real witnesses, and a real jury in the quest for truth.

Swiss director Jean-Stephane Bron contacted Empowering and Strengthening Ohio’s People four years ago because the grassroots agency was at the forefront of identifying predatory lenders and fighting to help homeowners. ESOP is at the movie’s center, with former ESOP board member Barbara Anderson acting as herself. Bron followed ESOP’s work against big banks and Anderson’s years of personal and collective struggle.

 “I was honored to appear in the movie as we highlighted the strength of the community and Cleveland’s fighting spirit,” said Barbara Anderson, a former ESOP board member and vocal community activist.       

Cleveland vs Wall Street has earned several honors in Europe.

  • Official Selection, San Paulo & Rio Film Festival 2010
  • Nominated, Best Documentary Feature, Cesar Awards 2011, Switzerland
  • Official Selection, Director’s Fortnight, Cannes Film Festival 2010,
  • Winner, Best Documentary Feature, Quartz Awards 2011
  • Official Selection, Munich Film Festival 2010

The film will have a preview screening at the Cleveland International Film Festival on Saturday, April 2nd at 4:10 p.m.

The official U.S. premiere on Tuesday, April 5th will be hosted by director Jean-Stephane Bron.  Bron, along with ESOP member Barbara Anderson and Cleveland attorney Josh Coen, will hold a Q&A session after the movie.

The premiere will also serve as a fundraiser for ESOP and the Inner City Boxing Gym. Admission costs $20.  Tickets can be purchased in advance at  (Click here to purchase tickets.)

Audiences across northeast Ohio can see the film during opening weekend, April 8th-11th at the Capitol and Cedar Lee movie theaters.  ESOP staff will host a screening on Sunday, April 10th, at 1:45 p.m. at the Cedar Lee Theater. Log onto to purchase tickets.


ESOP is a HUD-certified foreclosure prevention counseling agency and a leader in Ohio. We have 10 offices across the state and a nearly 75 percent success rate. We have been on the frontlines of the predatory lending and foreclosure epidemic since 1999. In the last six years more than 16,000 families have come to ESOP seeking assistance. In 2010 ESOP helped save more than 3,200 homes from foreclosure.