Matt Faris to Havas as new head of broadcast/digital

Matt Faris

HAVAS WORLDWIDE CHICAGO not only hired veteran agency producer Matt Faris the first of the year for the newly-created position of broadcast and digital production – but 27 other new employees. 

Faris will lead an expanded team of broadcast and digital producers that include broadcast production manager Bonnie Hamilton, producer Joe Pitre, associate producer Natali Torres and newcomers senior digital producer Dan Corken, from Energy BBDO and Kara Weinart, broadcast coordinator, previously an associate producer at INXPO and Todd Bernstein, audio engineer. 

Faris joins Havas/Chicago from the Atlanta/Tampa-based 22squared agency, where as SVP/director of production, he restructured the broadcast, interactive and print production departments to create 22squared’s integrated production department.

Previous to 22squared, Faris was a broadcast producer at Bernstein-Rein, Kansas City. 

In just the past few months, Havas has been on a hiring streak. Out of the 28 new positions, primarily on the account side, seven were added to the creative department.

They are Leslie Gray, senior copywriter, from McKinney (Sherwin-Williams, Mieijer, Century-Link); Dalia Jury, ACD, who worked for Y&R and Hanft Raboy & Partners, New York; Peter Berta, senior production artist and Arthur Czerep, art director — both had been freelancing for Havas; Arthur Caturano, digital production artist, from Walker Sands Communications; junior copywriters Bob Howe, from Leo Burnett/Arc and Pitchfork Music Festival, and Nathan Morris, a recent U of Missouri grad, who had been on intern on Victory Motorcycles’ projects.  

Havas clients include Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, PlayStation, Citigroup, EFFEN® Vodka, Sauza® Tequila, Reynolds and Hefty.

CASTING CALL SATURDAY for extras of all ethnicities, age 16 and over, for “Catbird,” formerly titled “Divergent,” from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Cinespace, 2602 W. 16th St., second floor. 

The producers are looking for people with stunt and/or stage combat training; military, weapons or martial arts training; hippie or “Bohemian” looking, with longer hair for both men and women; individuals with visible tattoos and/or piercing and those with a “rural” farmhand look.

THE CHICAGO DANZTHEATRE ENSEMBLE holds auditions Feb. 17 for one male and three females with physical theatre/movement dance and acting training for two original danztheatre work created by Elyzabeth Adler, at the Fulton Street Artist Collective, 200 W. Fulton St., 2-5 p.m.

THE CHICAGO CINEMA SOCIETY’S first screening at the beautifully restored Golden Age movie palace, the Patio Theatre, Feb. 8-11 is the wildly acclaimed doc, Sound Citydirected by multi-talented Dave Grohl, frontman for Foo Fighters, about a recording studio, as Rolling Stone put it, “buried in a corner of Van Nuys as it moves from legend to the analog bone yard,” a place where music megastars recorded their magic on analog tape for three decades.


At 6008 W. Irving Park Road, $7 at the door. 

ANOTHER STAR TALENT for Hillary Herbst’s Hilly Reps firm: live action spot director/DP Gavin Bowden was signed by client Big Block of Santa Monica; an award-winner for several Chili Peppers music videos. 

HOLLYWOOD SCREENPLAY CONSULTANT Barri Evans revisits Chicago to speak to the Chicago Screenwriting Network Feb. 10 at CSN’s new meeting place, Restaurant Fifty50, 2047 W. Division.  Evans will teach and analyze those all-important query letters and loglines. 

She will consult one-on-one prior to the meeting; reserve your space at

CONVERSATIONS AT THE EDGE presented by the School of the Art Institute, holds a Feb. 14  Evening with Fern Silva,” the currently Chicago-based, multi-honored filmmaker, who was named one of the “top 24 avant-garde filmmakers of the 21st century” by Film comment magazine.  Several of his “geographically-sweeping” short films will be screened.

At the Gene Siskel Film Center, 163 N. State at 6 p.m.

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