The Wilmette Theatre Offers Sports Documentaries

At the Wilmette Theatre
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On October 7 & 8, The Wilmette Theatre is hosting two evening screenings of the documentary film The Fan Connection, a deeply personal fly-on-the-wall look at the lives of die-hard fans over a hockey season. Ultimately, it is a heart-warming story of what it means to be a fan of an underdog team, identifying with a city, and the power of ordinary citizens to affect change.

The Fan Connection Poster
The Fan Connection Poster

The Fan Connection brings home the sense of belonging, happiness and fulfillment that Chicago sports fans can really appreciate. 

One die-hard Chicago Cubs fan who had previously seen the film called it, “heartwarming and fun for any sports fan.” They said they “found the film so relatable” because they connected with the people in the story and their struggles with a team that doesn’t always perform as well as you think they should.

Directed by Mary Wall (WGA-nominated writer for several webisodes of The Officeand assistant to the Executive Producer of Parks & Recreation) and produced by Eric Wojtank (co-writer of the episode “Game Night” for ABC’s Speechless), the film shares the intimate, personal stories of six die-hard hockey fans who live out their lives in dedication to a team and city that has never won a championship.

The Fan Connection director, Mary Wall, sets up a shot in the middle of a Buffalo snow storm

In the Rust Belt city of Buffalo, NY, frustration is at an all-time high after decades of decline and broken promises. Not seeing a path to renewal for their city in the politicians or corporations who have let them down for decades, the beleaguered yet loyal citizens turn to their professional hockey team for relevance, not just for their city, but for themselves. 

After following these six fans for four years, director Mary Wall said, “It’s easy to be loyal to and cheer for a winner but it’s something special to cheer for a team and a city that never wins. This story would only be as strong as the fans I found to be in the movie; an audience would only care about Buffalo and the Sabres if they cared about the people who did. Along with my producer and editor, we melded all the unique threads (city, Sabres, and personal) to tell a heartwarming story of persistence and resilience.” 

Screen shot, Courtesy of Garnier Public Relations

Longtime sports fans and bar owners Michael Clarke (Pit &Tap in Wilmette) and Ben Cirincione (Real Time Sports in Elk Grove Village) will attend and join in a panel discussion with The Fan Connection director Mary Wall on Saturday, October 8th

Mary Wall will also be in attendance on Friday, October 7th.

Friday, October 7 and Saturday, October 8th at 7:00pm.

Wilmette Theatre (1122 Central Ave, Wilmette)

For tickets:

For more information on the film, visit:


Photos are courtesy of Garnier Public Relations 

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