65th Columbus International Film + Video Festival to Open with Signature Move


The 65th Columbus International Film + Video Festival — presented April 19 – 23, 2017, by Columbus College of Art & Design — is thrilled to announce this year’s opening film.

Jennifer Reeder’s Signature Move (82 minutes) will open CIF+VF — the oldest film festival in the United States — on Wednesday, April 19, at the Wexner Center for the Arts (1871 N. High St. on The Ohio State University campus).

Signature Move, which will make its world premiere at SXSW in March, was named one of the 50 most anticipated films of 2017 by Filmmaker Magazine.

Here’s the synopsis: “A secret new romance with Alma forces Zaynab, a thirty-something Pakistani, Muslim lesbian, to confront her complicated relationship with her recently widowed mother while taking up lucha-style wrestling, in this comedic and heartfelt look at love.”

“It’s a very culturally important movie,” said Jeremy Henthorn, executive director of the Columbus International Film + Video Festival. “It tackles a lot of subjects that are in the American consciousness right now. But at the same time, it is a really fun, really energetic film. It doesn’t deal in stereotypes. It deals in life, and it deals in struggle, and it tells a love story about a Muslim-American lawyer who not only finds love for another person but also finds a passion for lucha wrestling.”

The film also has plenty of ties to the Midwest. It was shot in Chicago, and the director grew up in central Ohio and graduated from The Ohio State University.

“It’s always a special night when we get to present a new film by Jennifer Reeder at the Wexner Center. The films are audience favorites and embody so much of our mission and values as an arts center. It’s been so meaningful to be able to support the creation of many of them,” said Chris Stults, Associate Curator, Film/Video, Wexner Center for the Arts. “For her newest feature film, it’s exciting to partner with the Columbus International Film + Video Festival and CCAD to host their opening night screening and introduce audiences to this irresistibly charming film, fresh from its world premiere at SXSW.”

CIF+VF will announce the rest of the festival schedule in March. Festival passes cost $60 and are available now at columbusfilmfestival.org. Tickets for individual film screenings will go on sale in March.


Founded in 1952, the Columbus International Film + Video Festival is the oldest film festival in the United States, showcasing independent student and professional films from around the world. Presented by Columbus College of Art & Design, the festival showcases world-class independent films in central Ohio. For more information, visit columbusfilmfestival.org.


Columbus College of Art & Design teaches undergraduate and graduate students in the midst of a thriving creative community in Columbus, Ohio. Founded in 1879, CCAD is one of the oldest private art and design colleges in the United States, offering 12 undergraduate majors and two graduate programs in art and design that produce graduates equipped to shape culture and business at the highest level. For more information, visit ccad.edu.


The Wexner Center for the Arts is The Ohio State University’s multidisciplinary, international laboratory for the exploration and advancement of contemporary art. Through exhibitions, screenings, performances, artist residencies, and educational programs, the Wexner Center acts as a forum where established and emerging artists can test ideas, and where diverse audiences can participate in cultural experiences that enhance understanding of the art of our time. Learn more at wexarts.org.


Jeannie Nuss
Senior Media Relations Specialist 
Columbus College of Art & Design