Laughlin Constable wins three PCC Trumpet Awards

Laughlin Constable announced that it has been awarded three Publicity Club of Chicago Trumpet Awards, which honor distinguished individual achievements in public relations, marketing and communications. The agency was awarded for work on behalf of clients North Shore Bank, Crisis Prevention Institute (CPI) and O&H Danish Bakery. “I’m incredibly proud that our PR team’s hard work can be … Continue reading “Laughlin Constable wins three PCC Trumpet Awards”

Macaulay Culkin supports Trump out of Home Alone 2

Macaulay Culkin speaks out in his supports the removal of Donald Trump’s cameo from Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Culkin, who starred as Kevin McAllister in the popular 1992 Christmas movie, gave his thoughts on having Trump, edited out of the comedy on Tuesday, a day prior to the president’s second impeachment by … Continue reading “Macaulay Culkin supports Trump out of Home Alone 2”

Lightning strikes Trump Tower before debate

Apparently, Mother Nature may have an opinion on the Trump Biden debate. Before Thursday’s presidential debate, Trump Tower was struck by what appears to be three simultaneous bolts of lightning, though one Twitter user pointed out that it could just be one lightning strike followed by what are called “stepped leaders,” or a series of … Continue reading “Lightning strikes Trump Tower before debate”

WGN’s Joe Donlon lands Trump interview on NewsNation

Chicago-based NewsNation anchor Joe Donlon will conduct the first comprehensive prime-time sit-down interview with President Trump since the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  The exclusive one-on-one interview will be conducted at the White House by NewsNation anchor Joe Donlon, and will air on Tuesday night’s NewsNation broadcast beginning at 8 p.m. ET on … Continue reading “WGN’s Joe Donlon lands Trump interview on NewsNation”

C-K wins 9 Trumpet Awards from PCC

Leading independent marketing and communications agency Cramer-Krasselt (C-K) certainly has something to trumpet about these days. The agency just received nine awards from the Publicity Club of Chicago (PCC), following its annual Golden Trumpet award show. “C-K is thrilled to be recognized by the PCC for the breakthrough work we deliver for our clients,” said Karen … Continue reading “C-K wins 9 Trumpet Awards from PCC”

Lightfoot tells Trump what she won’t tolerate

President Trump stated that Chicago is next on the list for his “law and order” campaign. Mayor Lori Lightfoot says “there has been a lot of saber-rattling from this administration.” Local Chicago Government officials, including Mayor Lori Lightfoot, were initially outspoken against the insertion of federal agents into cities with the intention to quell civil … Continue reading “Lightfoot tells Trump what she won’t tolerate”

Mayor Lightfoot doubles down on Trump comments

Friday, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot had some choice words for President Donald Trump’s vile and divisive rhetoric he has been spewing on his Twitter account. The Mayor said, “I have two words, one begins with F and it ends with U.” While addressing the media about the weekend’s violent protests and looting, Lightfoot doubled down … Continue reading “Mayor Lightfoot doubles down on Trump comments”

Mayor Lightfoot has two words for Trump – “F U”

During a press conference held today, Mayor Lori Lightfoot lashed out at President Donald Trump for his tweet which promoted violence against Minneapolis protestors angered over the killing of George Floyd. The Mayor, who is never one to hold back said, “I will code what I really want to say to Donald Trump. It’s two … Continue reading “Mayor Lightfoot has two words for Trump – “F U””

New doc helps brewery say “F*** Your Hair” to Trump

After taking offense at President Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants, a Chicago beer maker brews up a protest Chicago production company One City Films has bottled the essence of American politics into a new film about cultural dignity, First Amendment rights, and beer. F*** Your Hair: The Latin-Owned Brewery that Dumped Trump tells the tale … Continue reading “New doc helps brewery say “F*** Your Hair” to Trump”

Periscope praises “Empire,” Trump calls “Roseanne”

Half of ‘Empire’s’ mid-season premiere filmed as one-act play (Spoiler alert: Please don’t read ahead unless you’ve seen “Empire’s” midseason premiere.) Sheesh, it sure has been a minute since Empire has been on. The series, which is filmed at Cinespace Studios, returned with its mid-season premiere last night. In the episode titled “Birds in a … Continue reading “Periscope praises “Empire,” Trump calls “Roseanne””

Somewhere in America marks Chicagoan Brian Schodorf’s sixth feature

Somewhere in America, produced by Chicago based media company Schodorf Films, marks Chicago/Midwest Emmy-Award winning filmmaker, Brian Schodorf’s sixth feature length project. Long before the stunning flashpoint that led to a Donald Trump Presidency and ultimately the Capitol siege on January 6, Director, Brian Schodorf set out through the heartland of the nation during one … Continue reading “Somewhere in America marks Chicagoan Brian Schodorf’s sixth feature”

Toyota’s Corolla Cross ad is a musical masterpiece that feels just right

Nothing beats the satisfaction you get when things just work effortlessly, moving with you in complete harmony. Packing that pleasure into one flawlessly choreographed spot, Burrell Communications and In & Out Productions are showcasing Toyota’s new Corolla Cross – a vehicle in which everything feels ‘Just Right.’ Directed by Daniel Azancot, the musical masterpiece stars … Continue reading “Toyota’s Corolla Cross ad is a musical masterpiece that feels just right”

The Best of Reel Chicago interviews in 2021

Human beings are social animals. Personal contact and social interaction with others is simply essential. In opposition, Covid created lock downs, quarantines and generally created a need to rethink how we communicate with each other. Because communicate, we must. Although we all had hopes for 2021, it has pushed, provoked, squished and forced its way upon us … Continue reading “The Best of Reel Chicago interviews in 2021”

Reel Chicago top 21 stories for 2021

Here are the top 21 stories on Reel Chicago in 2021. There were over 2500 stories between Reel Chicago and our sister publication Reel 360. With a record breaking total of 1.4 million views this year. Whether our stories were about the resurgence of film & TV production, the Reel Ad of the Week, or … Continue reading “Reel Chicago top 21 stories for 2021”

Video Journalist Scott Jacobs passes suddenly at age 71

Story submitted by Tom Weinberg (Founder, Media Burn) I handed Scott Jacobs his first portable video camera at Videopolis in 1974. He was on leave from reporting at the Chicago Sun-Times. He was hooked on video journalism from that day until Thursday, October 21, 2021. Scott lumbered. He laughed at his own witticisms and snorted. … Continue reading “Video Journalist Scott Jacobs passes suddenly at age 71”

Veronica Wolski, COVID-19 vaccine critic, dies of COVID

Veronica Wolski, a Chicago activist and well-known QAnon supporter who spread misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines, died of the virus early Monday. The Chicago woman, at the center of the Ivermectin firestorm, was just 64-years-old. A Cook County medical examiner’s office representative reported she died of pneumonia brought on by her COVID-19 infection, and hypothyroidism was … Continue reading “Veronica Wolski, COVID-19 vaccine critic, dies of COVID”

Chicago creatives bring home 15 Lions for their city

Chicago creatives are the recipients of 15 Cannes Lions International Festival Awards, including the Titanium Lion – the top creative award in the world for the “Boards of Change” work. In addition to the awarded Cannes Lions, the City of Chicago was recognized at The One Show 2021, receiving one Grand Prix, four gold, four … Continue reading “Chicago creatives bring home 15 Lions for their city”

Republican Adam Kinzinger shunned by family members

Republican Adam Kinzinger has been shunned by family members, as eleven relatives sent him a vitriolic letter accusing the Illinois representative of being a member of the “devil’s army” in light of his criticism of then-President Donald Trump after the January 6 insurrection, The New York Times reported Monday. “Oh my, what a disappointment you … Continue reading “Republican Adam Kinzinger shunned by family members”

Think you know everything about Groundhog Day?

Every February 2 on Groundhog Day, North Americans wait with bated breath to discover if there will be six more weeks of winter or if there will be an early spring as foretold by Punxsutawney Phil when he emerges from his “den.” Since 1887 the large terrestrial rodent (as well as his predecessors) has been … Continue reading “Think you know everything about Groundhog Day?”

Schaumberg CEO fired after storming U.S. Capitol

On the same day the U.S. Department of Justice filed charges in federal court against the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol building last Wednesday, Bradley Rukstales, a Schaumberg tech firm President and CEO, was fired for his role in the act of domestic terrorism. Rukstales, 52, the head of data analytics marketing firm Cogensia … Continue reading “Schaumberg CEO fired after storming U.S. Capitol”

2020 in Review: Reel Chicago’s Biggest Stories

What a year, huh? 2020, which felt like a decade, will undoubtedly go down in history as one of the worst years ever. And who will argue? Certainly not the staff at Reel Chicago. This year, COVID forced productions to shut down. Then start back up. Then shut back down. Then start back up. It … Continue reading “2020 in Review: Reel Chicago’s Biggest Stories”

Merry Christmas from Reel Chicago + Reel 360

No need to dive in-depth into what a dumpster fire of a year 2020 has been. We all know. The pandemic has altered the way many of us view life for good. Even how we celebrate Christmas this year. And we really understand the ramifications of COVID here at Reel 360 and Reel Chicago. Because we reported on … Continue reading “Merry Christmas from Reel Chicago + Reel 360”

REVIEW: Boseman, Davis make ‘Ma Rainey’s’ a must-see

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is the long-awaited adaptation of the hit stage play, written by August Wilson by the same name. Aside from a few scenes in the beginning of the film, it is blocked and feels very much like a play, which provides an intimacy between the characters and the audience that most films … Continue reading “REVIEW: Boseman, Davis make ‘Ma Rainey’s’ a must-see”

REVIEW: ‘Trial of Chicago 7’ is compelling entertainment

The Trial of the Chicago 7 is a compelling courtroom drama that is filled with crisp dialogue that debuted on Netflix a month before the election. While Trump’s Justice Department labeled the film as political propaganda, writer/director Aaron Sorkin’s latest shows how much has not changed when it comes to our judicial system. Up to … Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Trial of Chicago 7’ is compelling entertainment”

Joe Biden wins! “It’s time for America to unite”

History was made this morning and it’s fitting that the city where liberty was born sealed the deal. CNN, the New York Times, NBC, The Washington Post have projected Democratic nominee Joe Biden, Jr. as the 46th President of the United States. Biden, 77, will be the oldest president to occupy the White House. He will turn … Continue reading “Joe Biden wins! “It’s time for America to unite””

Illinois and rest of country wake to nail-biter election

Even securing Illinois’ 20 electoral college votes was not enough to allow the state’s Democrats to go to sleep without downing Xanax. Last night, as polls closed and votes were still being tabulated in several key states, both Democrats and Republicans went (or at least tried) to sleep with extremely close election results being reported. … Continue reading “Illinois and rest of country wake to nail-biter election”

Ogilvy, Optimus want us to “Stand By Our Mail”

The U.S. Postal service has gotten a lot of shit over the last few months from Planet Trump. The President criticized plans to fund the USPS in preparation for mail-in voting and said “if we don’t make a deal, that means they don’t get the money… That means they can’t have universal mail-in voting.”  Trump … Continue reading “Ogilvy, Optimus want us to “Stand By Our Mail””

Tenacious D covers infamous ‘Time Warp’ for election

Let’s do the time warp againnnn… Pandemic style. Tenacious D covers the infamous popular rack of Rocky Horror Picture Show ‘Time Warp’. It’s the fourth song in the cult classic movie musical, and the one sung by Riff Raff, Magenta and Columbia just as Brad and Janet have entered Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s creepy castle. The song … Continue reading “Tenacious D covers infamous ‘Time Warp’ for election”

“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” trailer shows 1920s Chicago

Netflix released the first trailer for “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” showing the lush period setting of 1920s Chicago “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” is Chad Boseman’s final performance, and adapted screenplay by Pulitzer Prize winner, August Wilson. The film is set on the backdrop of Chicago, in 1927. It touches upon race, art, religion and the exposed unfair … Continue reading ““Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” trailer shows 1920s Chicago”

Kanye West pushes Presidency run with Yeezus merch

With two and a half weeks left until the election, Chicago native, Kanye West released a new ad curving the vote, asking Americans to write him in as their choice for President 2020. The 43-year-old rapper and fashion mogul, who announced his presidential campaign in July, tweeted an ad to his more than 30 million … Continue reading “Kanye West pushes Presidency run with Yeezus merch”

Chicago teen has winning campaign for “settling”

While his bid for the White House is nowhere near as polarizing as when Hilary Clinton ran against President Donald J. Trump in 2016, there are those (looking at you Bernie and Warren supporters) who are still lukewarm on former Vice-President Joe Biden. With just about three weeks to go until election, many (and rightfully) … Continue reading “Chicago teen has winning campaign for “settling””

Lester Holt to moderate Town Hall with Joe Biden

NBC News’ Lester Holt will anchor a live town hall discussion with Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden from Miami on Monday, Oct. 5 at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on NBC. The one-hour primetime event will also air across MSNBC, CNBC, NBC News NOW and will be available in Spanish on … Continue reading “Lester Holt to moderate Town Hall with Joe Biden”

Susan Carlson leaves NBC-5 to focus on family

Who hasn’t had a crush at one time or another on Susan Carlson, who has been one of the queens of local news for 29 years. Some of the Reel Chicago team never missed her morning broadcast before moving to LA. Now, the beloved anchor has announced, via Twitter, that she will be leaving NBC-owned … Continue reading “Susan Carlson leaves NBC-5 to focus on family”

CIFF announces Gardner as keynote speaker

The Chicago International Film Festival, presented by Cinema/Chicago, has announced this year’s Industry Keynote conversation with Academy Award-winning producer and president of Plan B Entertainment Dede Gardner. Her credits include 12 Years a Slave and Moonlight. Both presented at past editions of the Festival. Additionally, Industry Days will host master classes with Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter … Continue reading “CIFF announces Gardner as keynote speaker”

Byron Allen proceeds with $10B lawsuit against Charter

Byron Allen announced that Judge George H. Wu has again denied Charter Communications’ Motion to Dismiss Allen’s $10 billion lawsuit against Charter for racial discrimination. Just as the court ruled in Allen’s favor back in October 2016, the lawsuit will now move forward.  Although Charter appealed Wu’s original 2016 decision to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Wu’s … Continue reading “Byron Allen proceeds with $10B lawsuit against Charter”

Imagine living in a world without a superhero

Although most of us know that Chadwick Boseman, who died Friday night at the young age of 43 due to aggressive Colon Cancer, only played Black Panther in a movie, for most of us it feels like the actual superhero Black Panther died. Chadwick was bigger than life. He was more than an actor, he … Continue reading “Imagine living in a world without a superhero”

The 9th annual 3% Conference goes virtual Monday

The 3% Movement will host a digital conference themed “The Radically Inclusive Future of Work” for their 9th annual event, July 27-29, where attendees are invited to reimagine work from the comfort of their own homes. Between a global pandemic and racial unrest in our country, this moment in history is serving as the ultimate … Continue reading “The 9th annual 3% Conference goes virtual Monday”

Hyde Park Jazz Festival’s adapted 2020 Programming

To keep our community and artists safe, the Hyde Park Jazz Festival announces new and adapted programming for the 14th Annual Hyde Park Jazz Festival and summer/fall 2020. While it will not be possible to produce the Festival in its multi venue format, the Festival’s programming this year seeks to provide audiences with safe and joyous free … Continue reading “Hyde Park Jazz Festival’s adapted 2020 Programming”

Lightfoot claps back at McEnany, calls her “Karen”

The lesson here is – not that the current White House ever learns – don’t mess with Mayor Lori Lightfoot. After White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany referred to Lightfoot as “the derelict mayor of Chicago” during a press briefing, the mayor clapped back, tweeting “Hey, Karen. Watch your mouth.” Middle-aged White women — the … Continue reading “Lightfoot claps back at McEnany, calls her “Karen””

Leo Burnett copywriter, Trans Lifeline co-lead, Len Sheth

Leo Burnett junior copywriter Len Sheth opens up about their highly successful work with Trans Lifeline, brands authentically extending their reach, and even a competitive tap-dancing past. Two years ago, Len Sheth began their journey as a Burnetter—and since then, the junior copywriter has created exceptional work for a diversified client portfolio including American Heart … Continue reading “Leo Burnett copywriter, Trans Lifeline co-lead, Len Sheth”

Lilly Wachowski admits “rage” inspired ‘Matrix’

Like other big budget productions, The Matrix 4, directed by Lana Wachowski, has shut down until the current Coronavirus pandemic has cleared enough for studios to feel safe to go back into production. That day seems like it will come sooner rather than later as sister outlet Reel 360 reports California will reopen for film production this Friday, June 12. … Continue reading “Lilly Wachowski admits “rage” inspired ‘Matrix’”

City of Chicago prepares for cautious reopening

Following several days of violent protests, the City of Chicago restores access to the Central Business District to prepare for cautious reopening. Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot today announced restored access to the Central Business District and Loop, to prepare the city for reopening on June 3. While full access to the area will be reintroduced … Continue reading “City of Chicago prepares for cautious reopening”

Chicago devastated, Cusack allegedly assaulted by CPD

With 699 arrests, more than 80 people shot, a dozen killed and even more injured this was one of Chicago’s deadliest weekends in recent memory. As mayhem and chaos spread across the city, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, the Chicago P.D. and eventually, the National Guard attempted to maintain peace as more than 3,000 protestors, including … Continue reading “Chicago devastated, Cusack allegedly assaulted by CPD”

Iconic Central Camera damaged amid protests

For those in the film industry, it’s tough to hear names like Central Camera go up in flames.  Founded in 1899, the third generation camera store reached its 121th anniversary this year. Crews responded to the two-alarm fire in the 200 block of South Wabash Avenue, according to a tweet from the Chicago Fire Department … Continue reading “Iconic Central Camera damaged amid protests”

Chicago’s own host the National Memorial Day Concert

Chicago’s Gary Sinise and Joe Mantegna host a special presentation of PBS’ National Memorial Day Concert: America’s Night of Remembrance. Featuring a Tribute to our American Heroes on the Front Lines of the Pandemic Crisis. PBS’ multi award-winning NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT returns for a special presentation hosted by Chicago’s Tony Award-winner Joe Mantegna and Emmy Award-winner Gary Sinise with new … Continue reading “Chicago’s own host the National Memorial Day Concert”

Glad, FCB thank sanitation workers in new campaign

Aside from Oscar the Grouch, who would have thought that one day, taking out the trash would be the best time of your day? Many people are now using this time as a new form of entertainment – even as an opportunity to dress up. So, as a brand that exists to keep people Glad  by bringing … Continue reading “Glad, FCB thank sanitation workers in new campaign”

‘CHICAGO TONIGHT’ provides local coverage of COVID

CHICAGO TONIGHT, correspondent/producer Paris Schutz reports live from Chicago neighborhoods highlighting community challenges and solutions The sudden onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has radically altered everyday life for Chicagoans as they try to adjust to a new normal. Now more than ever, our communities need fact-based news and trusted information about this developing public health crisis. … Continue reading “‘CHICAGO TONIGHT’ provides local coverage of COVID”

McDonald’s assures its customers they are here

After a weekend that saw 31 more known deaths and 1,570 new known cases of the coronavirus COVID-19 reported in Illinois — including the loss of an infant and the state’s largest single-day increase in new cases, Chicago-based McDonald’s is sending out a message of hope to its customers. McDonald’s wants to assure its customers that the QSR is … Continue reading “McDonald’s assures its customers they are here”

Yes, Anderson Cooper swore at Blagojevich on live CNN

When many Americans find themselves at a loss navigating a  constant stream of “fake news,” we should be grateful when a reporter like CNN’s Anderson Cooper has well armed himself with the facts, and doesn’t hesitate to cite them. In his recent interview of Rod Blagojevich, Cooper diligently refutes the Governor of Chicago’s defense of … Continue reading “Yes, Anderson Cooper swore at Blagojevich on live CNN”

Bing Liu among United States Artists 2020 USA Fellows

United States Artists (USA) is pleased to announce its 2020 USA Fellows. This year, fifty artists across ten creative disciplines will receive unrestricted $50,000 cash awards. The award honors their creative accomplishments and supports their ongoing artistic and professional development. The 2020 USA Fellows class is the largest since USA relocated from Los Angeles to … Continue reading “Bing Liu among United States Artists 2020 USA Fellows”

‘Last Man Fishing’ to launch Chi Film’s ‘Justice January’

This January, Chicago Filmmakers is pleased to present the Chicago premieres of three documentaries that explore current social and political issues around environmental justice, immigration justice, and reproductive justice in a program called Justice January. The films selected for the series — Last Man Fishing, Undeterred, and Our Bodies Our Doctors — reveal personal stories … Continue reading “‘Last Man Fishing’ to launch Chi Film’s ‘Justice January’”

Locals show us Englewood’s funny side in ‘South Side’

Chicago brothers, Bashir and Sultan Salahuddin, find humor in everyday struggles of working class, aspirational locals.   Wow, that was funny. Like really funny.   The new Comedy Central series South Side premiered Wednesday night, and in case you didn’t get the gist from the opening line, the show is funny AF. The network has … Continue reading “Locals show us Englewood’s funny side in ‘South Side’”

‘Knock Down the House’ documents a new tradition

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her progressive cohorts are part of a movement that will not be ignored   Knock Down the House, which debuts today on Netflix, is the story of four American women who turned their political frustrations into a national wakeup call. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Paula Jean Swearengin, Cori Bush, and Amy Vilela jumped … Continue reading “‘Knock Down the House’ documents a new tradition”

Doc10 screens the year’s best at the Davis Theater

Fourth annual fest of the best opens with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez doc, “Knock Down The House” The 4th annual Doc10 Film Festival’s 2019 lineup is an entertaining variety of undeniable relevance taking place April 11-14 at The Davis Theater (4614 N. Lincoln Ave.) The program opens with Rachel Lears’ critically acclaimed Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez documentary, Knock Down … Continue reading “Doc10 screens the year’s best at the Davis Theater”

Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report

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 Disorderly … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report”

Jussie Smollett: Timeline of a “hoax?”

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 almost be led to believe a group of writers in a writer’s room was responsible for a … Continue reading “Jussie Smollett: Timeline of a “hoax?””

Antongiorgi to perform at “F*** Your Hair” screening

Singer who wrote Spanish version of “America the Beautiful” will appear with One City Films at SPACE in Evanston   Sandra Antongiorgi, a rising Chicago artist known for her thought-provoking visual art and World, Latin and Neo-Soul music will be headlining a concert February 24 at SPACE in Evanston, as part of the film screening … Continue reading “Antongiorgi to perform at “F*** Your Hair” screening”

Questions arise in Jussie Smollett’s alleged attack

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) at … Continue reading “Questions arise in Jussie Smollett’s alleged attack”

“Chicago protest” double-bill lights up Siskel Center

“’63 Boycott” and “F*** Your Hair” will screen with filmmaker Q&As during special events on January 25, 26, 30 Later this month, the Siskel Film Center will offer audiences a chance to explore current and former grassroots political movements while viewing a pair of Chicago-made docs during special double-feature screenings of F— Your Hair and … Continue reading ““Chicago protest” double-bill lights up Siskel Center”

President George H.W. Bush passes at 94

The country’s 41st President passed away Friday night, just seven months after wife Barbara Bush. CAVU. According to CNN reporter Jamie Gangel, this was the code word that the Bush family used to let each other know that their patriarch and 41st President of the United States, George Herbert Walker Bush had finally passed away. … Continue reading “President George H.W. Bush passes at 94”

David Winer launches Fancy Mountain Music & Sound

”The goal is always to help the narrative and to feel something. When you do, it’s lovely stuff.” David Winer On November 12, veteran musician and composer David Winer launched Fancy Mountain Music & Sound, a Chicago-based company serving the advertising and film industries. With decades of experience creating music for live, studio, commercial, and … Continue reading “David Winer launches Fancy Mountain Music & Sound”

Chicago artist sings ‘America La Hermosa’ for protest doc

“It really kind of makes sense about where we are today … we are a nation of immigrants … we need to be the standard bearers of fairness” Sandra Antongiorgi   Sandra Antongiorgi’s new single, America La Hermosa, will play when the credits roll at the end of F*** Your Hair, One City Films’ 2018 … Continue reading “Chicago artist sings ‘America La Hermosa’ for protest doc”

From writing copy to writing novels: Jonathan Harries

“Arrogance is a terrible thing for a writer to have. I know what she’s thinking. I know what he’s thinking. You don’t.” Jonathan Harries   When I first met Jonathan Harries in the late 90s, I remember how engaging, funny and straight forward he was. I enjoyed his wit, humor and worldview over the ensuing … Continue reading “From writing copy to writing novels: Jonathan Harries”

Windy City Fest to premiere Wertheimer’s “Skippers”

“Listen to the wind. Listen to the leaves and the water brushing the sand. When a stone speaks to you, you bend down and you pick it up.” Carver from “Skippers”   Writer/director Aaron Wertheimer’s feature-length Skippers will premiere on Sunday, July 15 at the second annual Windy City International Film Festival. “It’s a beautiful … Continue reading “Windy City Fest to premiere Wertheimer’s “Skippers””

CFO’s Yolanda Arias retires after 32-year career

“The Chicago crews, they’re awesome,” she says. “Working with them has been the most enjoyable part of the job.”   Yolanda Arias has been an integral part of the Chicago film industry for the past 32 years. As Assistant to the Director of the Chicago Film Office (CFO) — a position from which she retires … Continue reading “CFO’s Yolanda Arias retires after 32-year career”

BBDO studies political impact on Hispanic consumers

Despite an “increase in displays of prejudice,” Hispanics are actually spending more than ever.   Chicago marketing and advertising powerhouse Energy BBDO partnered with Culturati Research & Consulting, Inc. to conduct a study on whether or not the Hispanic community has been buying and shopping less as a result of anti-immigration fervor and a tense … Continue reading “BBDO studies political impact on Hispanic consumers”

Sun-Times launches anti-gun violence initiative

Created in partnership with Ogilvy, “31 bullets” identifies actions that Illinoisans can take to counter the negative effects of America’s gun problem   In an effort to combat gun violence, the Chicago Sun-Times has launched a new campaign on May 1 called “31 bullets” which identifies 31 specific actions Illinoisans can take to address this … Continue reading “Sun-Times launches anti-gun violence initiative”

The Obama’s Netflix deal is great news for viewers

“President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama have entered into a multi-year agreement to produce films and series for Netflix” Twitter, 9:00 AM – 21 May 2018 According to the statement above, which was posted on Netflix’ Twitter account today, President and First Lady Obama will soon be in show business. Although the Tweet described the … Continue reading “The Obama’s Netflix deal is great news for viewers”

Tessa Films, new study continue gun violence debate

The installation for The Escape Pod’s Chicago Gun Share Program has been removed from Chicago’s Daley Plaza, but the debate on gun violence in America continues.   In response to the Parkland school shooting, a handful of Florida legislators approved two bills that would set aside tens of millions of dollars to train teachers to … Continue reading “Tessa Films, new study continue gun violence debate”

“Infinity War’s” new box office record and other news

In Disney/Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War, intergalatic despot Thanos, otherwise known as the “Mad Titan,” hurls a moon at Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man. The same can be said about Disney and Marvel as the behemoth event, also known as a film, did the same to the weekend box office.   The epic story, ten years … Continue reading ““Infinity War’s” new box office record and other news”

Chicago Int’l TV Fest celebrates “Art of the Commercial”

The awards ceremony for the 54th Annual Chicago International Television Festival packed AMC River East in Streeterville last Thursday night. The evening began with a reception in the Wine Room at the Lucky Strike bowling alley, restaurant, and lounge, which is located on the second floor of the building where the theater resides. Executive directors, … Continue reading “Chicago Int’l TV Fest celebrates “Art of the Commercial””

Reel Women: Carey Lundin, Filmmaker

Carey Lundin is a multi award-winning director, writer and producer specializing in comedic digital series, media for progressive candidates, and documentaries. Lundin recently directed and co-wrote The WORST Travel Show, a five-episode comedy / travel series for the newly launched Facebook Watch and WatchMojo.   Her digital series, Citizen Kate, The Outsiders’ View of Inside … Continue reading “Reel Women: Carey Lundin, Filmmaker”

The Mill, Burrell, Cow Lamp, Obamas, Wakanda news

Live action director and VFX supervisor Ergin Kuke joins The Mill+ Chicago Ergin Kuke will soon begin working his LA-honed, box office savvy as Creative Director for The Mill+ Chicago, according to a press release issued today.     Kuke has notched an expansive variety of experience since relocating to the States from his native … Continue reading “The Mill, Burrell, Cow Lamp, Obamas, Wakanda news”

Angelina Jolie, DGA Awards, Box Office, SNL in the news

  Angelina Jolie wins at Annie’s The Vince Lombardi trophy wasn’t the only award handed out this weekend. In Los Angeles, The Directors Guild of America and The Annie Awards honored their own for excellence in directing in film and television and animation, respectively Angelina Jolie wore a silver gown and brought two of her … Continue reading “Angelina Jolie, DGA Awards, Box Office, SNL in the news”

Latino film fest poster is an artistic breakthrough

The 34th annual Chicago Latino Film Festival poster is a testament to the universal power of art. Featuring a strip of film that runs like a sidewalk through a broken wall in a mountainous desert, the poster’s fresco style illustration communicates the same message that the event has made obvious for decades: Latin culture rocks. … Continue reading “Latino film fest poster is an artistic breakthrough”

Orbitz, SG+, Luci Creative, “Cartoon Pres” in the news

Orbitz names Havas AOR Havas Chicago announced Tuesday that its culture-based approach was among the factors helping the Chicago shop earn agency of record status for Orbitz. Havas Chicago has created award-winning, culturally relevant campaigns for its deep roster of iconic American brands including Coca-Cola, Craftsman, Hefty, Reynolds, Ragu, and Sears. The decision follows a … Continue reading “Orbitz, SG+, Luci Creative, “Cartoon Pres” in the news”

“Middle class” actors, writers, crew hit hard

It’s official. President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (which we’ll call the “Tax Jobs Law”) during an Oval Office ceremony this morning. Next stop, holiday in Florida. With the corporate tax rate set to drop from 35% to 21%, the Tax Jobs Law has been hailed as a “middle-class miracle” by … Continue reading ““Middle class” actors, writers, crew hit hard”

User data powers Spotify’s new outdoor campaign

As a former advertising creative, I can’t honestly say my ears always perked up at the mention of “User Data.” Typically, it was the driest portion of any meeting, causing me to use my time better by challenging my neighbor to a game of impromptu Tic-Tac-Toe. I would gladly join back in when it was … Continue reading “User data powers Spotify’s new outdoor campaign”

Energy BBDO puts faces on the Opioid crisis

Last year, a mindboggling 22,000 people lost their lives to prescription Opioid overdose last year. With President Trump declaring that the Opioid Crisis is a US Public Health emergency, the National Safety Council is taking action to address the issue head on by launching a provocative nationwide public education campaign via EnergyBBDO that literally puts … Continue reading “Energy BBDO puts faces on the Opioid crisis”

David&Goliath build a wall for immigration rights project

Ahhhh, let’s talk about Trump’s border wall. You know – the one that should really be dubbed, “Trump’s Folly?” No, Im not hiding my disdain for his great big wonderful wall. We have all heard about it. Correction, we adults have all heard about it and depending on whether your color scheme is red or … Continue reading “David&Goliath build a wall for immigration rights project”

WTTW online series celebrates Pilsen

The latest short documentary in WTTW’s online series, My Neighborhood Pilsen, focuses on Lincoln United Methodist Church’s role in providing sanctuary for international asylum seekers. Opening with footage of a speech by US Representative Louis Guitierrez, Inside a Church at the Forefront of Chicago’s Santuary Movement highlights the deeply personal struggles intensified by the Trump … Continue reading “WTTW online series celebrates Pilsen”

Digitas, Indianapolis Art, Box Office, SNL in the news

DigitasLBI, AOR for Maytag, has produced a humorous new thirty second spot called Delivery that supports Maytag’s tagline, “What’s Inside Matters.” Directed by Martin Granger from Moxie Pictures, the spot follows the Maytag Man as he (and clones) stands in for a variety of appliances as they leave the factory and are delivered to various … Continue reading “Digitas, Indianapolis Art, Box Office, SNL in the news”

Regarding the financial backing of Jennifer Samaan

During the AFM (American Film Market), which was held November 1 – 8 in Santa Monica, one is exposed to all kinds of films at various levels of quality. You can see very good at the market and you can see very, very, very bad. Looking at you China Salesman! Then there are the interesting … Continue reading “Regarding the financial backing of Jennifer Samaan”

Utopic collecting for Puerto Rico

The results of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico have been devastating to say the least. And the response of the current administration to the island, which is home to 3.4 million Americans, has been ridiculously lax as well. Tuesday, the Trump administration even denied a request from several members of Congress to waive shipping restrictions … Continue reading “Utopic collecting for Puerto Rico”

Politicians and Rock-n-Roll

We see it every election cycle: a candidate stands on a podium while a crowd cheers and music blares. Ronald Regan blasted “Born In The U.S.A.” George W. Bush boomed “Brand New Day” Donald Trump roared “Rockin’ in the Free World.” The music inspires patriotism, rejuvenation and spirit, but what if the songwriter does not … Continue reading “Politicians and Rock-n-Roll”

Chicago shops win Gold, Silver and Bronze Lions

(Cannes, France — 19 June, 2017) Even though McCann New York’s Fearless Girl was the big winner on the first night of the Cannes Lions Festival, Chicago agencies did manage to come home with lions as well. FCB Chicago, BBDO Chicago, DigitasLBI, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy and Mather and Lapiz won lions in the categories of: Glass, Outdoor, PR, Promo & Activation and Print & Publishing. Below, see every Lion won by U.S. agencies on the night.

Ogilvy promotes sanctuary status with #ChicagoIsOne

On May 22, The City of Chicago, along with Ogilvy Chicago, fired back a moving response to President Trump’s threats to take away funding for sanctuary cities, Chicago being one of them.

The fundraising campaign and website called, #ChicagoIsOne, seeks to remind Chicagoans that the immigrant story is everyone’s story.


Chicago team wins “Next Great Animated Series”

Odd Machine executive producer Alec Pinkston, director Gregory Hinchman and director Peter Stepnoski’s animated short, Senataur, took top honors in “The Next Great Animated Series” contest sponsored by Tongal and Project Greenlight.

The three-and-a-half-minute comedy trailer about a space alien centaur who forces his way into the American legislative branch is a no-holds-barred, graphic commentary on the nation’s sociopolitical landscape.

Costello’s director journey continues, part 2 – an essay

So here we were. NJ Bourque and myself. Yep, we were going to do it. We were going to make a short film on our own and I was going to direct this puppy.

On the surface, I felt as confident as Jordan in the paint, as I had worked with some of the best in the business — Spike Lee, Michael Bay, Marcus Nispel, Jaume Collet-Sera, Pam Thomas and Malcolm Lee. I was ready. I could do this. Yes, yes.

All of that sounded great over wine with NJ. However, in the morning, while drinking coffee, I was more like, “What the fuck have I committed myself to?”

Paonessa Talent actors head for TV and film stardom

The next 10 days will be especially exciting for talent agent Marisa Paonessa. She will be making two consecutive weekend trips to New York to celebrate the TV and film premieres of two of her agency’s talent.

She will attend the Oct. 1 premiere of “Saturday Night Live’s” 42nd season, in which her client, improv artist and sketch performer, Alex Moffat, will debut as a regular member of the iconic TV series.

TV pioneer’s invaluable Media Burn TV archives at 10

The concept behind TV pioneer Tom Weinberg’s Media Burn Archive was simply to preserve independently produced videos. “What we’ve been doing for the past 40 years matters,” he explains. “If we don’t save videos as a view into the cultural past, no one will ever see it.”

Over the past 10 years, the nonprofit organization has collected, restored and digitized more than 7,000 such videos from a variety of non-digital sources.

Wachowskis comments send a distorted message

Filmmakers Lana and Andy Wachowski have been on a media blitz lately, popping up in national magazines, local newspapers and radio.  What makes this is a huge story in itself is that the Beverly natives are notoriously secretive and rarely if ever give interviews.  Even the CIA is envious of the tight security at their CGI Kinowerks studios in Ravenswood.

Digitas’ Andrew Furth leads ‘indescribable’ local band

Chicago blues isn’t dead, but it’s aging while the contemporary music scene is exploding. The professional 20-somethings in this town don’t want a quiet bar with a dusty stage and a glass of whiskey. They want music they can shake to with a $2 PBR and a shot.

They want music that celebrates what makes them such a fast paced unstoppable force that, like the amazing and diverse Reels Green band, can’t be categorized.

Wachowskis’ original sci-fi epic UK bound, so we hear

IF THERE’S ONE THING directors Andy and Lana Wachowski  are expert at it’s keeping a tight lid on news about their projects, never publicly speaking about them and thus allowing the rest of us to wallow in rumors and speculation. 

Such is the situation with their upcoming Warner Bros. epic, “Jupiter Ascending,” the first time the siblings have written together and their first original sci-fi movie.

The OneSun also rises on a new composer

Composer/musicians Frayne Lewis and Mike Middleton have a lot in common. They both grew up in their fathers’ music and were mentored by their fathers: Frayne by jazz legend Ramsey Lewis and Mike by Kent Middleton, a Leo Burnett EVP and head creative on the Phillip Morris account.

“Mike’s like an industry photo negative of my own personal experience,” Lewis says of the latest addition to OneSun Entertainment Group, CRC’s fast-growing composing division.

Middleton says he was hired “for two tasks at hand.

“Merry Gentlemen” goes theatrical in May

“THE MERRY GENTLEMEN,” the all-Chicago feature that was shot here in 2007, is being distributed theatrically by Samuel Goldwyn Co. May 1 in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles and on May 8 in Boston and San Francisco.

The movie, starring Michael Keaton, also the director, and Kelly MacDonald, was written by Draftfcb creative exec Ron Lazzeretti.    

Friends of ex-Teamster Bill Hogan rally to his aid

Jim Belushi will be one of the Friends of Bill Hogan hosting a March 24 fundraiser on behalf of the former Teamsters official, as he defends his right to free speech.

In a bizarre parallel universe out of an H. G. Wells sci-fi novel, Bill Hogan could go to jail for six months for violating an order to never speak to anyone in the union ? including his son.

“Although I am personally angered by the way Bill has been treated, he keeps his head up and takes the high road. I will support Bill to the end,” Belushi said.

Webisode star “Citizen Kate” shines at the DCN and RNC and her fame extends to other sites

POLITICOS WEREN’T ALONE IN THE SPOTLIGHT at the recent Democratic and Republican Conventions.

Producer Carey Lundin’s alter ego, “Citizen Kate,” star of the increasing popular website,, struck high saturation pay dirt. “We proved that hard work, planning, creativity and just showing up, are all it takes to be successful,” says Lundin. At the two national conventions, “Kate,” aka actress Kate Soglin, got her share of the spotlight.

Beck retires from CFO after 28 years; Chicago Creative Club holds Awards Night Sept. 10

DEBBIE BECK RETIRED from the Chicago Film Office last week without fanfare, after a remarkable and dedicated 28 years serving the film community.

“Debbie’s warm, unaffected personality, matched with unsurpassed longevity, made her almost iconic — the heart and soul of the office. She will be extraordinarily missed,” says Rich Moskal, who was appointed CFO director when Beck was into her sixteenth year on the job.

Funeral services set for cameraman Andy Lock; two Wisconsin indies start production

Funeral services for longtime sports cameraman Andy Lock of AndyCam, who died from a heart attack Wednesday, will be held Tuesday, Aug. 26 at St. John’s Church in Kankakee at 11 a.m.

Mr. Lock had been filming pre-game White Sox interviews prior to the game at U.S. Cellular Field when he was stricken.

Visitation is Monday, 4-9 p.m. at the Schreffler Funeral Home, also Kankakee; call 815/932-2421.


SIX NEW HD SPOTS returns the LaSalle St. law of Cochran & Montgomery to TV advertising for the first time since the death in 2004 of Johnny Cochran of O.J. Simpson trial fame.

SPI-TV shot six spots in the firm’s office, three with attorneys in their office and three in a conference room with other attorneys.

“Instead of a hard message like many law firm spots, each of these spots has a certain message,” says SPI-TV partner Jim Demas, the writer/producer/director. SPI-TV’s Roger Gazga was DP; Product Productions handled lighting.

Familiar movie characters attached to producer Scott Prestin’s upcoming Chicago crime-thriller

WILLIAM FORSYTE leads a slate of familiar and sometimes sinister character actors in producer-director Scott Prestin’s crime thriller, “The Chicago Blues,” slated to shoot in late summer by Prestin’s company, American Stonehenge.

Forsythe (“Halloween”) will be joined by Vincent Pastore (“The Sopranos”), Daniel Baldwin (“Mulholland Falls”), Jon Gries (“Napoleon Dynamite”), Fred (The Hammer) Williamson and Farrah Forke (TV’s “Wings”).

Don’t be fooled by the look: the cheap but good Moon’s Sandwich Shop shines above other diners

Moon’s Sandwich Shop, 16 S. Western, has a sign outside that’s barely readable after decades of city wear and tear. But as we all know about the best holes-in-the-wall, like a book, we never judge it by the cover.

It turns out that Moon’s is hands-down one of the best diners in the city, possibly even the Midwest.

Moon’s is a bona fide chop shop in a city full of dinky imposters and one that’s usually packed to brim with saucy characters.

Vietnamese appetizers at Ba Le Bakery are half the cost and twice the portion of upscale spots

Intertwining certain foods can cause my taste buds to go berserk, like the sassy little appetizer known as goi cuon.

I’ve had an infatuation with these Vietnamese spring rolls since I first tasted them years ago at Le Colonial, but a short time ago, I stumbled across the mother of all goi cuons at Ba Le French Bakery, 5018 N. Broadway.

The epitome of freshness, goi cuons are like a delicious little soft-sandwich, served tidy and exotic like the Vietnamese, but with the class of the French thrown in for good measure.

Ramsey Lewis hosts 13-week “Legends of Jazz” series in HD at Ch. 11 for airing on national PBS

Chicago is about to regain its once-dazzling reputation for jazz as production of a series on the music and artists gets underway at Ch. 11.

“Legends of Jazz” is a 13-week, half-hour series hosted by Chicago jazz legend Ramsey Lewis, with Larry Rosen, one of the greats of the music industry, as an executive producer.

“Legends” will swing for three months at Ch. 11’s 5,400-sq. ft. Studio A and like “Sound Stage” performances in the next studio, will be shot in HD and 5.1 surround sound.