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Midwest Film Premiere of Restored TELL ME A RIDDLE Directed by Lee Grant to be Shown at Cincinnati Art Museum

1/12/2023 12:00:00 AM

Rachel Lyon, Local Independent Filmmaker and producer of film, will speak with Jaime Meyers Schlenck after screening

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CINCINNATI, OH –– The Midwest premiere of the restoration of Tell Me A Riddle will be shown at the Cincinnati Art Museum (953 Eden Park Drive) on Thursday, February 9, 2023, at 7:00 pm. This special event is free and open to the public and will be presented through a partnership between the Cincinnati Art Museum, the 2023 Mayerson JCC Jewish & Israeli Film Festival, and Women in Film Cincinnati. The restoration of the original film by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Los Angeles was just completed. This film needed to be saved from deterioration of the negative, and a new digital master of the restored film was made as well.

The film is based on Tillie Olsen’s O. Henry Award-winning novella of the same name. It is the story of an elderly couple, Eva and David, Russian-Jewish immigrants who experience the most intense conflict of their marriage right at the end of their lives.

Eva becomes ill, and David decides they should keep it a secret. While they travel the country to visit the homes of their children and granddaughter, Eva remembers both the violence of pre-revolutionary Russia and the stresses of married life with David where she was without a moment to herself to read or shine. Tell Me a Riddle is a celebration of life and love’s miraculous power of renewal.

Academy Award winners Melvyn Douglas and Lila Kedrova (Zorba) star as David and Eva, with Brooke Adams rounding out the cast as their free-spirited granddaughter, Jeannie. Tell Me a Riddle was the directorial debut of Academy Award winner Lee Grant and was produced by Lyon in 1980.

“It’s so remarkable to restore this film so beautifully – It will allow the film to be seen by a whole new generation,” states Rachel Lyon, producer of the movie. “When we heard Tillie Olsen read the novella out loud in college, we were determined to make it into a movie – no matter what it took. And it took five years! We called ourselves Godmother Productions – we could bake an apple pie you couldn’t refuse.”

After the Cincinnati screening, Producer Rachel Lyon will lead the discussion about the remarkable restoration, working closely with Lee Grant over past decades, and the many firsts for women that this film launched. This discussion will be moderated by Jaime Meyers Schlenck, President of Women in Film Cincinnati.


For information about attending the screening, please visit

To arrange an interview with Rachel Lyon, please contact:
Manda Hurdelbrink, [email protected] 513.324.8610