Former IL&M tech director joins Rethink as producer

Rethink producer Renita Taylor

INDUSTRIAL LIGHT & MAGIC’S LOSS is Rethink Studios’ gain. The CGI and motion graphic design studio hired Renita Taylor as producer when she recently moved to Chicago to be closer to family, after 13 years in San Francisco with Lucasfilm’s VFX division.

The last nine years at IL&M, Taylor was creature technical director, working on such films as “Star Trek,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End,” Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” “War of the Worlds,” “Van Helsing” and “Men in Black II,” name a few.

“We are so stoked about Renita joining Rethink,” says CGI director Brian Bullock, cofounder with EP Jessica Simmon of the five year old CGI and motion graphics design studios, in the West Loop.

“Renita is fully committed to our mission and wants to help the company live up to its full potential with innovative, creative, award-winning work,” Bullock says.

COMMONGROUND FOUNDERS Sherman Wright and Ahmad Islam say they will launch a new agency with the clients they served, including MillerCoors, before they teamed with MGS a year ago. They said, “We are moving forward as a new agency based in Chicago focused on getting back to business with our clients.”

For many months prior to last week’s agency dissolution, vendors had grumbled about Commonground owing them money for many months. It’s also said that staffers worked without salaries for at least two weeks before they were fired via email.

NEW AT KEY CODE MEDIA’s Schaumburg office is Mason Pierce, senior solutions architect, where he will strategically help clients build, install and design content creation strategies.

Pierce had been a Tribune Publishing engineer where he was instrumental in major video initiatives targeted to support Tribune Publishing’s video engineering strategy, content creation for advertisers, marketing and promotion of Tribune products to businesses and consumers.

“Mason brings a strong content background to help our client base increase their content creation and distribution strategies,” says Mike Cavanagh, Key Code’s LA-based president.

AICE STARTS THE NEW YEAR with the reelection of Cutters EP Craig Duncan president of the AICE International Board to another two-year term. New VP is LaRue Anderson, managing director/partner of Apache Digital, LA; reelected to secretary, Kristin Redman, EP at Hudson Edit and new treasurer, Ken Skaggs, 3009 president/partner, Dallas.  Here’s the full list of board members and past presidents.

The 2016 AICE Awards Show will return to Chicago sometime next summer, with venue and date being worked out.

AN AD AGENCY called InQbate, launching this spring, is the newest Loyola University student-run business.  It will handle advertising and marketing efforts of Loyola Limited’s businesses as well as take on small business clients in Rogers Park and Edgewater, and eventually greater Chicagoland, says Alex Ofori-Atta, a senior advertising and PR major and the student lead of InQBate.

CHICAGOLAND SHORTS, presented by Eugene Sun Park’s Full Spectrum Features, is seeking eight to 12 films from the so-called niche cinemas of Queer, Asian American, Latino, Black, Experimental, for Vol. 2 of the screening tour reel. Dec. 17 is the regular submission deadline and Jan. 17 the late deadline.

The new reel is being co-curated by Kartemquin’s Beckie Stocchetti, filmmaker and Columbia College instructor Dan Rybicky and Sun Park.

Vol. 2 will screen at venues across the US April-December and will be distributed through DVD, Blu-ray and VOD. 

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