Actor Jussie Smollett indicted, again

3+ Multiple news outlets are reporting that former Empire cast member Jussie Smollett will be indicted on six counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly leading police on an expensive wild goose chase. According to the Chicago Tribune, the 37-year-old actor will be arraigned on the charges at the Leighton Criminal Court Building on February 24, … Continue reading “Actor Jussie Smollett indicted, again”

Jussie Smollett probe issues ‘sweeping search warrants’

7+ The ongoing case of Jussie Smollett is storming into the new year with a new load of investigatorial twists and turns. The Chicago Tribune reported today that “a Cook County judge has ordered Google to turn over Jussie Smollett’s emails, photos, location data and private messages for an entire year as part of the … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett probe issues ‘sweeping search warrants’”

‘Empire’ cast calls for the return of Jussie Smollett

4+ Castmates tell Fox that the actor “has shown us who he really is as a leader.” What is a week at Reel Chicago if we don’t have a Jussie Smollett story? On the same day, The Chicago Tribune ran a story about Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx appearing Tuesday night on Girl Talk … Continue reading “‘Empire’ cast calls for the return of Jussie Smollett”

An open letter to Jussie Smollett

20+ Disclaimer: The viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, viewpoints and official policies of Reel Chicago and Reel 360 Dear Jussie, I understand that you sometimes read Reel Chicago. Thanks for that. It’s appreciated. So, if you do read this scrappy daily trade that I have been proud to be … Continue reading “An open letter to Jussie Smollett”

Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report

3+ After his surrender and arrest this morning, the actor’s bail was set at $100K during an afternoon bond hearing Empire star Jussie Smollett has been charged with filing a false police report, a felony. Yesterday, CPD Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi tweeted, “Felony criminal charges have been approved by @CookCountySAO against Jussie Smollett for … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report”

Jussie Smollett: Timeline of a “hoax?”

4+ Grand jury convenes this week to determine if the “Empire” star filed a false police report The alleged “homophobic” and “racist” attack on Jussie Smollett, which reportedly took place in the early hours of January 29, has taken more twists and turns than an hour of the locally-filmed hit Fox series Empire. One could … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett: Timeline of a “hoax?””

Jussie Smollett performs in L.A.

3+ The “Empire” star talks about the assault and his recovery during an emotional Saturday-night set at the Troubadour “I fought the f–k back.” Only four days after Empire star, Jussie Smollett was allegedly attacked by what sources close to him have called MAGA Supporters, the actor/singer appeared in concert on stage at Los Angeles … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett performs in L.A.”

Questions arise in Jussie Smollett’s alleged attack

6+ Area detectives and now the FBI continue to investigate the attack on the Empire actor Early Tuesday morning, Empire actor Jussie Smollett was attacked by what has been classified by Chicago police as a possible “Hate Crime.” First reported by TMZ, the actor was on his way home from a sandwich shop (reportedly Subway) … Continue reading “Questions arise in Jussie Smollett’s alleged attack”

‘Empire’ star Jussie Smollett beaten by MAGA supporters

7+ Details suggest the actor was targeted by racist and homophobic attackers during 2 a.m. assault CNN is reporting that Empire star Jussie Smollett was viciously attacked in the early Tuesday morning in what Chicago police are calling a possible hate crime. The 35-year-old actor has starred on the hit Fox series, which is filmed … Continue reading “‘Empire’ star Jussie Smollett beaten by MAGA supporters”

Fox renews ‘Empire,’ Smollett’s return unclear

5+ Cinespace Studios will have a busy season as the Fox series was renewed for Season 6 along with Showtime’s ‘The Chi’ Fox has announced that Empire, which shoots at Cinespace Studios, has been renewed for a sixth season at Fox one week before its Season 5 finale. Jussie Smollett’s, who plays Jamal Lyons, role … Continue reading “Fox renews ‘Empire,’ Smollett’s return unclear”

Updated: Is there finally “Jusstice” for Jussie?

3+ Cook County State Attorney drops all 16 criminal charges; and seals all records in a case full of twists and turns Again, the Jussie Smollett case has had more twists and turns than an episode of Empire. Less than two weeks after the Empire actor pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of disorderly conduct … Continue reading “Updated: Is there finally “Jusstice” for Jussie?”

Two Nigerian suspects in Smollett attack arrested

3+ Report: Chicago Police raided the home of “two persons of interest” on Wednesday night, investigation continues According to The Wrap, two “potential suspects” have been brought in for questioning by Chicago PD for the attack on Empire actor Jussie Smollett. Friday morning, Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, confirmed they are talking to two men, … Continue reading “Two Nigerian suspects in Smollett attack arrested”

Fox TV’s “Empire” pilot adds two new cast members

NEW STAR IN TOWN will be Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson (“Person of Interest”) and Jussie Smollett (“On Our Own”) joining star Terrance Howard in Fox TV’s pilot, “Empire,” director Lee Daniels and Danny Strong’s hip-hop drama. It starts shooting at Cinespace in mid-to-late March. 

As EMPIRE series ends, here’s our Top 10 favorite episodes

4+ Golden Globe-nominated EMPIRE is now in its sixth and final season as one of television’s most popular and groundbreaking shows. A powerful drama about a family dynasty set within the glamorous and often dangerous world of hip-hop music, the show revolves around the Lyons and their media company, Empire Entertainment. Tuesday is the EMPIRE Season … Continue reading “As EMPIRE series ends, here’s our Top 10 favorite episodes”

‘Empire’ airs 100th episode tonight on Fox

1+ What does Fox’s Empire, now in its sixth and final season, have in common with NBC’s Chicago Med, Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D. have hit E.R. and even Showtime’s  Shameless? They are all scripted shows based and filmed in Chicago that have reached the milestone of 100 shows.   The hip-hop drama, once a ratings powerhouse and pop culture … Continue reading “‘Empire’ airs 100th episode tonight on Fox”

The biggest stories of 2019

7+ The City of Chicago reigned supreme in 2019. Advertising agencies blended social justice with clever branding. Content creators reinforced Chicago’s reputation for inclusivity. Film studios entertained the nation while helping the local neighborhoods. And a handful of friends said goodbye. Below is a list of Reel Chicago’s top articles for 2019, separated by category … Continue reading “The biggest stories of 2019”

Season 6 to be ‘Empire’s’ last

4+ It happened to Rome. Now, it’s happened to the Lyons. Today before the Fall 2019 Upfronts began in New York, Fox announced that Empire, which is filmed locally at Cinespace Studios, would come to an end after the upcoming sixth season. The network also said the drama would return in the fall to its … Continue reading “Season 6 to be ‘Empire’s’ last”

No host. No “obvi” winner. Here are our Oscar picks!

2+ Awards season finally comes to a curious, confounding and sometimes confusing end this Sunday when the Oscars announce their winners at the Dolby Theater. This year, there is no host (may come to regret that, Kevin Hart detractors) for Hollywood’s version of The Super Bowl. And in a Black History Month where a notable … Continue reading “No host. No “obvi” winner. Here are our Oscar picks!”

Radha Mitchell toplines “The World Without You”

Chicago-based SB Productions announces Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill, London has Fallen), last seen in the faith-based film, The Shack, alongside Sam Worthington and Octavia Spencer, will star and executive produce, The World Without You, based on Joshua Henkin’s best-selling novel of the same name.

The film represents the directorial debut of established actor Damon Shalit, who was the writer and producer of African Gothic and A-List.

Terrence Howard records “Empire” finale tune at CRC

It wasn’t too long ago that giant recording studios were the norm in Chicago. There was Streeterville, Universal and Paragon.

Now? All gone. But still left standing is CRC. Recently, the recording studio has provided ADR and mixing for films including Hidden Figures, Spike Lee’s Chi-raq and Michael Bay’s Transformers: The Last Knight as well as numerous commercials and podcasts even.

If you ask CRC business affairs director, Dave Dakich, CRC’s continued success is due in part to their constant mix of music artists, films and commercials.