CINCINNATI -- "Gotti," a new biopic about notorious Gambino crime family leader John Gotti, is set in New York City, but Cincinnati residents are likely to recognize familiar faces and places in the Queen City-shot drama as it opens across the country this week.
Film Cincinnati commission president Kristen Schlotman, who has helped bring film projects including "Carol" and "The Killing of a Sacred Deer" to Greater Cincinnati, said the John Travolta-led film shot scenes in Over-the-Rhine and the Hamilton County Courthouse, among other local locations.
"It will be very cool for Cincinnati people to see what they can identify," she said.
And whom they can identify. Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters has a one-line speaking role as a judge in John Gotti Jr.'s trial, and steakhouse owner Jeff Ruby glowers silently as a mafioso.
"Kelly Preston stands up and starts yelling at me, and I hit the gavel and tell her, ‘Get her under control and get her out of here,'" Deters said, explaining his scene before joking: "That's what I do. I'm quite an actor."
Local tailor Carmen Ramundo, who owns Pepe Ramundo's in Covedale, dressed leading man Travolta for the shoot. Ramundo said he made five suits in 10 days -- an intense effort, he added, but one he would gladly repeat.
"It was a great, fun experience," he said.