Experiencing Interruptions?

Train Ave

"Somewhere between Wall Street and Main Street is life on the 'other' side of the tracks."

A talented artist continuously makes discoveries of deceased dogs in garbage bags along a forgotten road in a downtrodden neighborhood, showing compassion by cremating and memorializing them into his art to tell their stories, opening dialogue about a little dark secret of Cleveland's past and present in an attempt to change its future.

  • Jeffrey Theman
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 29 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    January 16, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    13,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Distribution Information
  • Jeffrey Theman
Director Biography - Jeffrey Theman

Jeff Theman has explored his creativity for as long as he's been able to hold a pencil and paper. From drawing/painting and pottery, to creative writing, and finally photography and film (video).

His first documentary - Guilty Til Proven Innocent, was an examination of laws called Breed Specific Legislation (BSL), which restrict or prohibit certain types of dogs, using Ohio as the backdrop, and how it affected local municipalities beginning in the late 1980's. Originally released in 2013, it screened in 20-some U.S. cities, including two film festivals (2013 St. Louis International Film Festival; 2014 Kansas City Film Fest) and three law school universities as part of their animal law curriculum. In 2019, it was re-released completely re-edited and updated.

After touring that first documentary, the idea for "Train Ave" began in January 2014, after a visit to the primary subject's (artist, Sean Jason Kelly) tattoo parlor, where he told this hauntingly beautiful story about the acts of compassion towards these dogs he found. The film's production was halted soon after it began when Jeff experienced severe depression and anxiety for the first time. The project gained new life in the beginning of 2017, and was finally completed in January 2021.

Two more film projects are currently in some phase of production under his company, River Fire Films.

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Director Statement

I take being a documentary filmmaker very serious. I have the incredible task to represent an individual, subject, or topic fairly and accurately, while also using critical thinking skills through the entire process to tell the story. Being a storyteller means - you tell THE story, and not the story you want to tell. There's a difference.