Production set to begin on Zen Room this spring

6+ Production of new single-cam, mockumentary style comedy series Zen Room is set to commence early March after news of Cheri Oteri (former SNL cast member, Grown Ups 2) joining the cast as lead, executive producer, and writer. While plenty of film production has been shuttered due to Covid-19, actress and writer Ashley Joyce (Gilmore … Continue reading “Production set to begin on Zen Room this spring”

From Bitcoin to Books & Movies: a Chicago Partnership

1+ Bitcoin to Books and Movies, hedge fund talent Brandon Elsasser is also a debut author. His 2020 memoir Once More Without Feeling was recently optioned for production by storylab, a former Hollywood-based production company now in Chicago, and 10,001, a strategic design consultancy and content studio based in Los Angeles. Elsasser’s book has yielded a film project aptly titled The Trade. The … Continue reading “From Bitcoin to Books & Movies: a Chicago Partnership”

CIFF announces ‘Go to the Body’ as winner of The Pitch

3+ The 56th Chicago International Film Festival has announced the winner of The Pitch at the 6th edition of Industry Days: Go to the Body, written and directed by Kyra Jones (co-creator of The Right Swipe) and produced by Angellic Ross.  The film follows Sanaa, a rising racial justice organizer who is sexually assaulted by a fellow … Continue reading “CIFF announces ‘Go to the Body’ as winner of The Pitch”

Chicago-made web series ‘All-American Sex Offender’

1+ CMA Digital Studios and Proteá announce the release of its bad-girl web series ALL-AMERICAN SEX OFFENDER.  All six-episodes, directed by Chloe Lenihan (writer: HOW FAR SHE WENT; director: LIFE, COACHED) and co-written by Lenihan and Alex Cannon (I WANT YOU INSIDE ME), are streaming on YouTube. The twisted romantic comedy follows an impulsive single woman (Chloe … Continue reading “Chicago-made web series ‘All-American Sex Offender’”

Cinespace releases their Production Safety Guidelines

11+ Cinespace Chicago Film Studios has released their own set of Production Safety Guidelines and announced their partnership with ServPro, which will be the exclusive cleaning service allowed on campus.  These updates come as the City and State move further into Phase 3 of Re-opening. Among the industries reopening- with strict safety guidelines- are: childcare businesses, libraries, bars and outdoor dining at restaurants.  Cinespace … Continue reading “Cinespace releases their Production Safety Guidelines”

‘Brothers from the Suburbs’ updates a film tradition

5+ Chicago filmmaker Patrick Wimp sheds new light on the drama of high school life The Chicago-made web series Brothers from the Suburbs is on a winning streak that includes Best Web Original at HBO/BET’s Urbanworld Film Festival, Best Direction at SeriesFest, and the Audience Award and Jury Award for Best Scripted Digital Series at … Continue reading “‘Brothers from the Suburbs’ updates a film tradition”

‘Three Hours’ wins ChiFilmFest’s $20K Pitch

3+ Aemilia Scott, Holli McGinley film follows a single mother living on the edge of Chicago’s Humboldt Park The 55th Chicago International Film Festival has announced the winner of The Pitch at the 5th edition of Industry Days: Three Hours, directed by Aemilia Scott and produced by Holli McGinley. The film follows a single mother … Continue reading “‘Three Hours’ wins ChiFilmFest’s $20K Pitch”

ChiFilmFest announces slate for “The Pitch”

2+ Five film projects to compete for $20,000 awards package of in-kind goods and services   The 55th Chicago International Film Festival announced a slate of five narrative feature film projects in active development that will be pitched in front of a live audience and a panel of distinguished industry judges during the Festival’s Industry … Continue reading “ChiFilmFest announces slate for “The Pitch””

ChiFilmFest unveils Industry Days agenda

4+ Master Classes with Oscar and Sundance winners are just a few of the events scheduled for October 17-20 program     The 55th Chicago International Film Festival announced today the program for Industry Days (October 17-20, 2019) with an impressive list of guest speakers to inspire and illuminate the film and entertainment community.   … Continue reading “ChiFilmFest unveils Industry Days agenda”

Vasilatos nabs a couple Megafest noms

2+ The Chicago filmmaker earns a pair of honors while exploring options for his next project Restored in 2018 for its 25th Anniversary with a new orchestral score, Lifetime Television’s first original holiday movie, Solstice, produced and directed by Jerry Vasilatos, will be screened as an official selection at the Action on Film / Hollywood … Continue reading “Vasilatos nabs a couple Megafest noms”

Chicago Int’l Film Fest releases Industry Days schedule

4+ Headliners include Oscar-­winning director Steve McQueen, Emmy-­nominated writer Bashir Salahuddin, and award-­winning producers Albert Berger and Bob Teitel (Chicago — 26 September 2018) The complete program of Industry Days (Oct. 11­14) at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival was announced today with an impressive list of guest speakers to inspire and illuminate the Midwest … Continue reading “Chicago Int’l Film Fest releases Industry Days schedule”

Chicago indie “Hunting God” wraps production

4+ Feature-length thriller, “Hunting God,” recently wrapped production in Savanna, Il, located just two and a half hours west of Chicago     (Chicago — 4 May 4) Produced by JJack Productions and backed by investment group Chicago Media Angels, Hunting God follows a recent widower who, when reunited with his old church buddies to … Continue reading “Chicago indie “Hunting God” wraps production”

CMA Digital Studios to fund five webseries with $50k each

11+ CMA Digital Studios (CMADS) has created a potentially life-changing opportunity for filmmakers and content creators in Illinois. The company’s 2018 Content Initiative will invest $250,000 in five Illinois-made webseries to be selected by a committee of key players from the Chicago film community over the next two weeks.   The opportunity is open to … Continue reading “CMA Digital Studios to fund five webseries with $50k each”

Dwelling within Chicago’s “Public Housing Unit”

3+ Screenwriter Patrick Wimp gathered an abundance of background material before he began on Public Housing Unit, a story about three police officers who patrol the Chicago projects in the 1980s. Over the previous year, along with creators Angie Gaffney and Ted Reilly, he had interviewed not only the cops who had worked the public … Continue reading “Dwelling within Chicago’s “Public Housing Unit””

Public Housing Unit among shows headed to NY TV fest

Seven Chicago-produced TV pilots for have been selected for the 2017 New York Television Festival, which will light up the Big Apple in the third week of October. From a candid glimpse at life in the projects to a personal crisis in a suburban basement, the themes reflect a dynamic and exciting Windy City production scene.

CIFF selects four IL film projects for “The Pitch”

1+ The 56th Chicago International Film Festival announced a slate of four narrative feature film projects in active development that will be pitched live in front of a virtual audience and a panel of distinguished industry judges during the Festival’s Industry Days on Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020.  Now in its sixth year, The Pitch at Industry Days has established itself as a leading industry showcase spotlighting bold, original work from the Chicago region. Past projects from The Pitch at Industry Days have gone onto completion, including Jennifer Reader’s Signature Move, and two films showing at last year’s Chicago International Film Festival: Knives and Skin, also directed by Jennifer Reeder, and Haroula Rose’s Once Upon a River. This year’s filmmakers represent a diversity of voices that continue to reinforce the breadth and vitality of Chicago-area filmmakers and projects: from a sci-fi comedy horror film set in the suburbs to a drama set along the Mexico-American border, to the story of a sexual assault within a Black community and an estranged daughter in an Iraqi-American family who impersonates her recently deceased father. See below for loglines. The winning pitch receives an awards package of in-kind goods and services worth tens of thousands of dollars. Contributors include Keslow Camera, IFA Chicago and The Story Stage at CineSpace, Chicago Media Angels, Ramo Law PC, and the Sundance Institute. “Right now, during the pandemic, it’s the perfect time to develop, workshop, hone, and fine-tune feature film projects and make them great,” said Chicago International Film Festival and Industry Days Senior Programmer Anthony Kaufman. “The Pitch is a terrific way for the Festival to support and encourage local filmmakers and help push their projects forward.” This year’s Pitch will be hosted by IFA Chicago Executive Director and producer Angie Gaffney, and this year’s jury includes: Bronwyn Cornelius, producer of Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize winner Clemency; Ilyse McKimmie, Deputy Director for Sundance Institute’s Feature Film Program; and Yvonne Huff Lee, co-CEO of Lagralane Group. The selected projects for 2020’s The Pitch at Industry Days are: Anchor Baby After witnessing his father nearly beat a Mexican immigrant to death while patrolling the desert border, a thirteen-year-old boy growing up in the Arizona Border Militia finds solace in an unlikely place — the arms of the new undocumented migrant girl in town. Screenwriter: Anna Hozian Director: Danny Mooney Producer: Dale Armin Johnson Go to the Body After Sanaa, a rising racial justice organizer, is sexually assaulted by a fellow activist, she tries to push past her trauma and return to her normal life. The only thing standing in the way is her fianceé, Kendrick, an overprotective boxer who has his own idea of justice. Writer/Director: Kyra Jones Producer: Angellic Ross Invasion of the … Continue reading “CIFF selects four IL film projects for “The Pitch””

2019-2020 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Nominations List

1+ Congratulations to our friends and advertisers who have received nominations for a Chicago/Midwest Emmy. The 62nd Chicago/Midwest Emmy Awards will broadcast virtually in November. Regions covered by the Chicago/Midwest Chapter include Chicago, Illinois; Peoria-Bloomington, Illinois; Rockford, Illinois; South Bend-Elkhart, Indiana; Green Bay-Appleton, Wisconsin; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Wausau-Rhinelander, Wisconsin; and Madison, Wisconsin. Here is the complete … Continue reading “2019-2020 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Nominations List”