Classic Films Headed to Athena Grand

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What do Clint Eastwood, Tom Cruise and the fictional Ferris Bueller all have in common?

Aside from a tendency for wacky antics, movies starring all of the above will be screened at the Athena Grand between May 19 and 21 as a part of the OHIO Alumni Association’s annual On the Green homecoming weekend.

“This is the third year for the film festival,” said Ali Wills, the assistant director for strategic partnerships for the OHIO Alumni Association. “Every year we go through the top movies of each decade, starting in the ‘60s, and we try to pick the ones that will be the most appealing and look the best on the big screen.”

Wills said that the festival is just as much for the community at large as it is for the alumni that return to Athens for the spring homecoming; an event that she described as focusing more on the arts and academia than the athletically driven fall homecoming celebration.

Since we are in the year 2016, Wills was charged with selecting films from 1966, 1976 and 1986. Those flicks include “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” “Bad News Bears” (the original, sans the crude Billy Bob Thornton from Richard Linklater’s 2005 rendition of the heart-warming classic) “All the President’s Men,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and “Top Gun.”

“What I find so interesting is the wide variety of movies that are being screened this year,” said Hailee Tavoian, the account executive for the OHIO Alumni Association. The movies are selected to appeal to a wide range of people, from family friendly fare like “The Bad News Bears” to exciting action adventure movies like “Top Gun.”

“For a lot of people, this is about nostalgia,” said Wills. “It’s a very different experience to see something like a Clint Eastwood film on the big screen.”

The schedule for the festival will be as follows: “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” at 5 p.m. on May 19; “Bad News Bears” at 5 p.m. on May 20, followed by “All the President’s Men” at 7:30 p.m.; “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” at 5 p.m. on May 21, tailed immediately by “Top Gun” at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $3 when bought in advance online or $5 at the door. More information about the film festival and the other On the Green events can be found at