“Empire” wraps season 2, will resume filming in July

TV UPDATE. “Empire” has wrapped its second season, with elegant scenes filmed at the Drake Hotel that lit up Michigan Ave. the past two days.  Fox TV’s hit series is expected to return to Chicago in July to start filming 18 episodes for season three.  

A spinoff pilot about Cookie’s (Taraji P. Henson) family created by “Empire” creator/director Lee Daniels, was filmed in Atlanta, and there’s a  good chance the series will join “Empire” at Cinespace. 

Already the biggest stage complex east of Hollywood, Cinespace continues to expand with additional stages in the works to accommodate increased production. 

FIAT CHRYSLER OF AMERICA is naming FCB Chicago the official agency of record for its Fiat brand in North America. FCB replaces The Richards Group, which remains the AOR for the Ram brand.

The Reel recently reported that the FCA’s Jeep Business was shifted from FCB to DDB, which became the lead agency on the account. In January DDB also became the lead agency on FCA’s Alfa Romeo account.

WHO’S NEW. Award-winning indie director Jack C. Newell (“Open Tables”) and co-creator of the Wabash Lights, is now on STORY’S directorial roster and available for commercial projects … The Mill Chicago imported colorist Matt Osborn from its London headquarters … Robin Stevens and Tracy Bernard are working as a team in co-representing bicoastal Los York 

in the Midwest. The integrated live action, design and experiential agency was formerly Stardust Studios.

WOMEN IN FILM CHICAGO on Tuesday, March 8, will join other WIF Chapters around the world to screen selected movies by WIF members.  The collection of 2016 winners includes “Lost and Found,” a comedy by Chicago award-winning filmmaker Oriana Oppice.  Screening at 7 p.m., at Alta K Station, 555 W. Kinzie.  WIFC members free, $10 non-members. rsvpwifc@gmail.com.


THE SLAMDANCE CINEMA CLUB is coming to ArcLight Chicago theatre, 1500 N. Clybourn, starting with “Fursonas” on March 30 at 8 p.m.   Two films will screen each month from the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, followed by a filmmaker Q&A. See the schedule here.


CHICAGO WILL HOST the Account Executive Seminar, presented by Second Wind. consulting and training services of Massachuetts at the Gleacher Center April 12-13. The course is structured for agency owners, account supervisors, account executives and account planners. 

IT’S YOUR NEWS that counts.  Send it over to ruth@reelchicago.com, or phone 312/274-9980.