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Shoplifters of the World

Opens on March 26

Director: Stephen Kijak Run Time: 90 min. Rating: NR Release Year: 2021

Starring: Elena Kampouris, Ellar Coltrane, Helena Howard, Joe Manganiello

Country: United States
Language: English

Presented in the Virtual Screening Room in partnership with Variance Films.

“The Smiths made so many people feel heroic enough to escape their circumstances… and Shoplifters of the World rightly and properly celebrates them.”

– Ken Scrudato for BlackBook

About the film:

Denver, summer 1987. British band The Smiths has just broken up. Reeling from the news, four friends mourn with a night of hard partying when an impassioned fan hijacks the local radio station and forces the DJ to play nothing but Smiths tracks for the entire night. With the radio on full blast, what follows is a wild journey of self-discovery.

Inspired by an urban legend, Shoplifters of the World is a film that celebrates youth and the power of music to change people’s lives, showcasing the iconic sound and style of England’s iconic 80s band: The Smiths.

About the filmmaker:

Critically acclaimed music documentarian Stephen Kijak has been directing fiction and non-fiction films for over 20 years. His projects include BAFTA-nominated feature Scott Walker – 30 Century Man, executive produced by David Bowie, the celebrated cult documentary Cinemania, and the iTunes pre-sale record-breaking Backstreet Boys: Show ‘Em What You’re Made Of.

He worked with the Academy Award-winning Passion Pictures production team on several features. Commissioned by The Rolling Stones, the platinum-selling Stones in Exile premiered in the 2010 Directors Fortnight in Cannes. In 2012, Kijak teamed up with Rob Trujillo from Metallica on Jaco about the late, great legend of bass, Jaco Pastorius. We Are X, a documentary about Japan X, the most successful rock band in Japanese history, received a Special Jury Award at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. The authorized Lynyrd Skynyrd documentary If I Leave Here Tomorrow premiered at SXSW 2018 and won the Music Movies Competition at the 42nd Cleveland International Film Festival.

Based entirely on the music of The Smiths, Shoplifters of the World marks his return to narrative filmmaking, collaborating with producer and actor Joe Manganiello, who plays the DJ in the film.

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Ohio Arts Council
Greater Columbus Arts Council
The Columbus Foundation
Campus Partners
G&J Pepsi
WOSU Public Media


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