DDB to welcome new creative chief

A NEW CHIEF CREATIVE FOR DDB after a two year search appears to be Ewan Paterson, 42, ECD at London’s Cemmow Horby Inge & Partners.

He will join the agency in June at a time when the agency accounts are sliding (State Farm gave nearly half of its creative business to DraftFCB and Wrigley moved Extra gum to Energy BBDO).

Paterson started his ad career in 1990 at Y&R, spent a decade at BMP DDB, to Bartle Bogle Hegarty in 2004 as CD on British Airways and a year later recruited by CHI.

Campaign MAGAZINE ranked him the No. 4 creative director in the U.K. in December 2008, noting that he was “widely credited with turning around the creative product at CHI,” Crain’s Chicago Business reported.

A GOLD HUGO AWARD will be presented to Bob Hercules and Keith Walker’s Media Process Group for their 60-second Chicago Symphony Orchestra spot that introduced new musical director, Riccardo Muti. A full-house is expected for Thursday’s awards ceremonies at the Hard Rock Hotel ballroom. PS: MPG and Red Car Chicago both will celebrate silver anniversaries next month, with Red Car’s anniversary party on the calendar for May 22.

ACTOR AIDAN QUINN will be in town Thursday for a special benefit screening of his new movie, “A Shine of Rainbows,” to support the Nicole Dreiske’s new International Children’s Media Center and the American Ireland Fund. Quinn, who acted in Chicago for several years, will introduce the film and answers questions.

The movie also stars Connie Nielsen and newcomer John Bell in a story about the transformational power of love.

Screening is at 600 N. Michigan theatre, 6 p.m. and $35 tickets for two good causes may be purchased at the door. And there’s a chance Maggie Daley and Nora Daley will attend the screening.

DIRECTOR RON HOWARD will receive a lifetime achievement honor from the 46th Chicago International Film Festival June 12, during the Fest’s annual Summer Gala at the Museum of Science & Industry. And talk about good timing. Howard will be in Chicago, starting in May, to direct an untitled comedy starring Vince Vaughan.

The award is well deserved for the hard-working and most-admired director, “who has mastered all genres ? and left a significant imprint on film history and changed the way we look at movies,” says CIFF artistic director Michael Kutza.

AND STILL MORE AWARD GALAS. Fred Willard and Ben Vereen and playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney, an alumnus, will be honored at The Theatre School’s 22nd annual Awards for Excellence in the Arts, April 19 at the Four Seasons.

Comedian Willard is a Second City alum and Vereen is an actor/dancer/singer Ben Vereen; both have arm-length resumes and are active in many charitable organizations. DePaul’s annual event has raised more than $3 million for the Theatre School’s Scholarship Fund.

*On June 19, the wildly entertaining Robert Downey, Jr. will add his oddball sense of charm and movie power to the annual Gene Siskel Film Center Gala coming up June 19 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. Proceeds will be used for programming and events.

HOWIE MANDEL, NICK CANNON and other “America’s Got Talent” celebrity judges will tape performers here April 27-28 at the Chicago Theatre.

WOMEN IN FILM holds its annual meeting April 27 at the Rock Bottom Brewery at Grand and State, where its new president will be announced. She will succeed Melissa Thornley, who has declined a second term for business reasons.

A NEW MEDIA COLLABORATION: WTTW/Ch. 11 and the Chicago News Cooperative, a new local multi-media news organization, has hired Ash-har Quraishi as their on-air reporter for print and internet.

COLUMBIA COLLEGE KEEPS GROWING, with its fourth and latest student resident addition, The Dwight Lofts at 626 S. Clark, which will be available this fall. The college now has more than 2,900 students living on campus, about 25% of the total student population and highest number ever for the school.