The Russo Brothers are Really Sorry About the Traffic

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Scene got to catch up with Anthony and Joe Russo yesterday afternoon, and — lest Cleveland's traffic has soured your opinion of them — they remain two of the classiest, most down-to-earth dudes working in the film industry.

Joe's wife and daughter were in town, and the four of them were grabbing a bite to eat on the upstairs patio of the Black Pig, on W. 25th street.

Be sure to check out the June 13th issue of Scene for our full interview, but for now, here's Joe Russo on the subject of Cleveland traffic and regional branding:

We couldn't be more apologetic for the traffic issue. We feel horrible about that. At the end of the day, we're sons of Cleveland. We write movies that are love letters to the city. Welcome to Collinwood was our self-effacing love letter to Cleveland. And we've been fighting really hard to bring film production work here over the years because the film business is a recession-proof industry. It works all the time. People always need entertainment.

Cleveland is really fortunate to have another recession-proof industry, health care, but it doesn't hurt for a town to be as multifaceted economically as it can...

You look at the set photos going out every day from the shoot, going all over the world, and they all say Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland. It's branding. With a big movie shooting here, you associate things that you like or think are cool with Cleveland. We think it's invaluable, but obviously we're biased.

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