“Stand Clear of the Closing Doors” at ReelAbilities Film Festival

Oct 30, 2014

Credit Stand Clear of the Closing Doors / Facebook

The second annual ReelAbilities Film Festival is taking place in Pittsburgh, focusing on movies telling the stories of people with disabilities.

We'll talk with director Sam Fleischner and Jesus Sanchez-Velez who stars in the film "Stand Clear of the Closing Doors." The movie won a Special Jury Prize at the Tribeca Film Festival and has played at film festivals around the world.

Fleischner explains that he came up with the story after reading a newspaper article about a kid on the autism spectrum who ran away from home and spent ten days riding the subways around New York City.

Watch a trailer for this film

Filming on the subway, Fleischner says, was a significant challenge -- especially because the film was produced in 2o12 when Hurricane Sandy was impacting the New York area.

When it came to playing the character Ricky, actor Sanchez-Velez says that he drew from his own experience as a student in special education classes in Florida in order to “become one with the character.”

The film is showing at 7:00 pm tonight at Rodef Shalom Congregation in Squirrel Hill.