Downstate town dresses up for Lottery shoot

THE ILLINOIS LOTTERY’S HOLIDAY CAMPAIGN was filmed in four locations throughout the state, including two days in Red Bud (pop. 3,700) way down south near the Mississippi River and St. Louis.  If Red Bud sounds familiar, it’s because the incredibly lucky winner of the Illinois Mega Millions jackpot last March lives there. 

Lottery boss Michael Jones says Red Bud residents were so excited that their town was going to be featured in the holiday commercial that they volunteered to deck out their houses and store fronts with holiday lights and holiday scenes, as depicted in the spot. 

Produced by Ed Amaya’s pass-through company, 59 Films, the spot had a crew of 25 and was directed by Joe Otting of Fiber Films.  Lisa Masseur was EP and Joe Doria the line producer and Otting brought in DP Nick Taylor from L.A.,.

“We shot in four locations for four days,” says Otting. “We were in Chicago for a day, and spent a day in Oswego, where we shot at a beautiful farm.  Then down to Rantoul and the reindeer farm.  They bought the reindeer, about eight or ten of them in Alaska.  Then we shot two days in Red Bud.

“It was a really neat town, with great old, untouched architecture.  The people were so gracious; they turned the town upside down for us.  It was a production dream to have a town behind you like that, to have them totally working on your behalf.”

Beast edited the spot and Jim Hoffman of Hoffman Sound handled audio and sound design.  Nick Tremulis scored the spot.

TV SERIES PRODUCER MARK BURNETT (Celebrity Apprentice,” “Survivor,” “The Voice”) and his wife and co-producer/actress Roma Downey slipped into Chicago Thursday, courtesy of Willowbrook mega church, to preview his epic 10 hour-long “The Bible Miniseries” to area pastors at a private screening at the Gene Siskel Film Center.  The History Channel will premiere the series early next year.    

THE PRODUCER/SCREENWRITER OF “THE WALKING DEAD” – Chicago native Sang Kyukim will be the special guest at Sunday, Dec. 2’s Chicago Screenwriters Group meeting at Pork Chop restaurant.  An NU grad who earned his MS at AFI in Los Angeles, he has also written/produced for TV’s “Crash” and “Hawthorne” series.

The main speaker at CSG is screenwriter Vaun Monroe, national president of the Black Screenwriters Association and a Columbia College instructor.  He will be interviewed by CSG board member Linda Frothingham.  At 941 W. Randolph, 6 p.m.

AFTER A DECADE OF FREELANCING, editor David Sarno has become permanent staffers at Resolution Digital Studio.  As a freelancer, he edited shows for Kurtis Productions, Harpo Productions, the History channel and DIY Network.  He’s also edited music videos and web shows.

NOVEMBER HAS SHAPED UP as one of the best business months ARU has had in years, says recording studio partner Mark Zeboski.  Not only has the studio been extremely busy engineering sound tracks for commercials, but it has seen an amazing 200% increase in original music business!  ARU’s staff composer Tom Haigh has mostly been composing complete original tracks for commercials and has had occasional requests for jingles. 

Zeboski and co-owner Don Arbuckle feel that part of the business spike comes from their move last summer from the Wrigley Building to significantly updated technology in their new studios and, not the least, increased assignments from their agency clients. Altogether, a great way to end the year.

ENTERTAINMENT ATTORNEY DAVID M. SALTIEL has joined the firm of Golan & Christie, moving over from partner at K & L Gates, LLP and its predecessor Bell, Boyd, & Lloyd, LLP, where he worked for almost 25 years.  Sattiel specializes in acquisition and disposition of rights, negotiations between creators and venues, agreements and representation of live venues.  

He is president and founding member of Chicago Children’s Theatre and a four-term trustee of the Village of Lincolnshire.

“SECRET SANTA SLAPDOWN” is the Monday, Dec. 3 special surprise edition of Columbia College’s popular Cinema Slapdown  discussions, or fiery debates, if you will, at Film Row Cinema, starting at 7 p.m.

Everyone appears to be very busy, so share news of your activities with the Reel’s far flung readers.  Email it all to ruth@reelchicago.com.

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