Cameras roll on three TV projects here next week

BUSINESS HEATS UP NEXT WEEK when cameras start rolling for two pilots and a TV series. Both Dick Wolf’s “Chicago Fire” for NBC Universal and the second season of the Starz series “Boss” swings into action on the same day, Thursday, March 15. Both are headquartered at Cinespace. 

The second pilot to simultaneously film here is a Sony Pictures/Fox TV drama called “Dirty Medicine,” about a young female surgeon who becomes indebted to the Chicago mafia.  Shooting is scheduled to start Monday, March 19.  No stars announced as yet and it’s headquartering at Chicago Studio City.

“Dirty Medicine” director is Michael Dinner, who is no stranger to Chicago, having been executive producer on “The Beast” series with the late Patrick Swayze and more recently last summer the executive producer of the sci-fi TV movie “Powers,” now in postproduction. 

VH1 has its five “syndicate sisters” cast for “Mob Wives Chicago,” a spinoff of the New York version of the reality TV show, getting set for production here.

THE NEW CANON C300 DIGITAL CAMERA that’s causing a roar of excitement will be demonstrated by ProGear at a three special C300 presentations about the camera’s capabilities, given by Canon’s Ed Meyers, Schilling Films’ Brian Schilling and ProGear’s Doug Sperling. The event runs run from 3 to 9 p.m. Thursday, March 15, at ProGear equipment and studio rentals, at 1740 W. Carroll. 

AFTER 33 YEARS OF TEACHING film at Columbia College, filmmaker and author Dan Dinello is retiring, with a celebratory screening send-off Thursday, March 22.  “Dan Dinello Retrospective: 33 Years in 45 Minutes” features several of his award-winning shorts and clips, extending from the disco/punk era to the present, and features Barack Obama, Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello and Amy Sedaris, among other.  At Film Row Cinema, 1104 S. Wabash.  Free and open to all.

ADD ONE MORE TO THE PARTY LIST. Thursday, March 15 will be a busy night for party-goers celebrating St. Patrick Day.  Noise Floor’s Corey Coken and Jamie Vanadia host their 2nd annual St. Patty’s Day Party Thursday, March 15 at their studios at 308 W. Erie after work. 

Bridges Media’s St. Pat’s party the same night will celebrate the launch of its new The Calvary digital content division.

BETTY WHITE’S NEW AARP SPOT, “Don’t be a Zombie,” has a Chicago connection.  It was written and directed in an efficient one-day shoot by Sam Auster, Chicago native and Columbia College grad, and shot by Chicago DP Lance Catania.  This is Auster’s third Betty White-AARP spot, directly for the national retirement agency, without benefit of an ad agency.  They just wrapped a spot for Elements Behavioral Health in L.A.

Auster and Catania first teamed up on Auster’s third feature, “The Return of Joe Rich,” filmed in Chicago with Sam Witwer, Armand Assante, Talia Shire and Tim Kazurinsky.  They are currently developing two features.

THE INDEPENDENT WRITERS OF CHICAGO on Tuesday, March 13, brings together five social media mavens for a 90-minute training session explaining how to get into and get the most out of top three social media gathering places. Open to all, it takes place at National-Louis University, starting at 5 p.m.

CINESPACE PRESIDENT NICK MIRKOPOULOS generously offered to match donations, dollar for dollar on behalf of non-profit FilmHellenes, hosts of the Greek Film Festival, for its the Smile of the Child fundraiser Sunday — a screening of the internationally acclaimed children’s film, “The Flea,” at the Pickwick Theatre in Park Ridge. 

The Smile of the Child organization is a community home for abused and neglected children of Greece.  Fletcher Camera general manager Zoe Borys is the fund raiser chair and a VP of FilmHellenes.  Mirkopoulos, whose Cinespace studios have been a mainstay of Toronto for years, is an active contributor to this and other Greek causes in Canada.

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