City gained $24 million from 2010 ‘Transformers’


A REASON WHY Illinois loves those big Hollywood films that show up every year or so. The Michael Bay-directed Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon, dropped $24 million here last summer for destroying Michigan Avenue and provided 400 jobs, not including countless extras.

Despite the universal trashing Transformers 3 earned from movie critics — a blistering one star from the Sun-Times’ Roger Ebert and one star-and-a-half from the Tribune’s Michael Phillips – the 3D movie grossed roughly $97.5 million as of July 1 and is expected to earn $180 million by July 4th. 

THIS YEAR’S BLOCKBUSTER MOVIE, Man of Steel, starts shooting Aug. 22 for a month in Chicago, Plano and Naperville and then moves to Vancouver, where it will continue shooting for seven more months, through April, 2012.

STORY HAS EXPANDED by an additional 2,200-sq. ft. to accommodate two additional editing bays for its recently added, thriving Whole Story editing services.  The company now occupies the entire floor at 401 W. Superior, its home for the past 15 years.

CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS were just completed between Cory Coken and Jamie Vanadia’s Noise Floor Sound Solutions and the Olympics’ International Broadcasting Community for Noise Floor to work at the London 2012 Summer Olympics, July 27-Aug. 12.  Noise Floor will be the official mixers for the wrestling competition’s crowd, referee and under the mat mics.

MARK YOUR CALENDAR for two big parties this month (so far).  Bridges Media celebrates its 10th anniversary July 22 at its studios at 100 W. Kinzie … Audio post Bam!’s Summer Party takes place July 28 at the Vertigo Sky Lounge at 2 W. Erie, cater-corner from its studios at 1 E. Erie.

VETERAN ACTOR MARTIN SHEEN and his filmmaker son, Emilio Estevez, are the honorees Aug. 19 at the Chicago Interntional Film Festival’s Summer Gala,    featuring the Chicago premiere of The Way, starring Sheen and written and directed by Estevez, followed by a discussion with them.

The Way stars Sheen as an American doctor who goes to Europe to claim the body of his adult son (Estevez) who was killed by a storm by walking in El Camino de Santiago in the Pyrenees.  He decides to finish the historic pilgrimage in his son’s place, not counting on the profound impact the journey will have on him.

 Sheen was in Chicago last March as narrator of Old St. Pat’s annual Irish Music Festival at Symphony Center and there’s talk he might return in 2012 in the same role.

THE LARGELY CHICAGO-MEMBER AICP Midwest will hold its first Detroit event this fall, a Meet.Drink.Mingle evening in similar to the one held here earlier this year at Rockit that attracted a robust crowd of 330 guests. 

While Detroit’s four AICP members don’t expect a turnout that size, they do anticipate a good mix of guests.  Says AICP member Sue Witham, owner of 20-year old Rare Medium Well Done, “The purpose of the party is to let agency people know we have amazing talents here in Detroit.”

Despite the recent loss of Michigan’s top-tier film incentives, Detroit’s spot business appears to be quite resilient, thanks to an uptick in Detroit’s core automotive business.


ANDERSONVILLE’S GREEN WEEK FESTIVITIES July 11-17 showcases the neighborhood’s sustainability with workshops, performances, special screenings at Chicago Filmmakers and the July 14 Green Week Brew-Off, celebrating the elixirs of 15 local brewers.  Still time to enter your special concoction for prizes. 

Sponsors are Mightybytes, Brew Camp, Eco-Andersonville and Hamburger Mary’s, where the brew-off takes place.  The fun runs from 7 to 10 p.m.


WHILE JUNE might have been slow for some here, the July forecast is very positive as advertisers crank up spots for the new fall show schedule, along with the repurposing of spots for cross platform usage.

Above all, and a positive sign of a recovery economy, is that advertising spending has been steadily growing over the past five consecutive quarters — $32.5 billion the end of the first quarter.  Of that, 14.6% came from online advertising, according to data from Kantar Media.