Production scene

“It’s great to be working on something more meaningful than vegetable peelers,” said Angle Park producer Martin Baumgaertner about the job that sent them throughout Chicago taping beautiful exteriors of improved neighborhoods.

The seven, 2-minute videos they produced highlighted the neighborhood improvements made by the seven winners of the Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards, held Feb. 6 at the Hyatt Regency.

The job got underway in November when Angle Park was given the winners’ names. Phillip Cantor was field producer and also shot in beta along with cameraman Andrew Dryer. Material was finished on in Avid and AfterEffects. Winners’ highlights were delivered on DVD.

Aside. Baumgaertner is an old hand at video. He started Angle Park in 1989 from his dorm at Wheaton College where he studied fine art and philosophy. The name comes from his high school band. Baumgaertner hired Cantor, who has a psychology background, to produce a music video in 1994. The freelance gig became permanent three years later.

As to the name of the vegetable peelers, Baumgaertner takes the fifth.

SPORTS PAGE. Berto Center in Deerfield, the Bulls practice court, got a workout in the last couple of weeks from two different advertisers.

First up: Larry August directed Bulls player Jay Williams in a spot for Chicago/Northwest Indiana Chevy Dealers/Campbell-Ewald, Detroit. (Remember, Michael Jordan touted Chevys for years and maybe the same good luck will befall Williams.) August worked on behalf of Avalon Films of Detroit/Santa Monica.

Then: American Express, O&M/New York called on Bulls players and coaches in a spot directed by Ringan Ledwidge of Harry Nash/Christopher Films of Irvington, N.Y.

DOCTORS MULTIPLY. A commercial for Alegent Health of Omaha features 50 doctors, all shot against green screen. Radar’s John Truckenbrod edited and added significant special effects. In the spot’s climate, doctors are stepped and repeated so a crowd of doctors extends to the horizon. Agency is Coil, Counts, Ford & Chaney; director was Rod Jensen of the Great Plains Motion Picture Co., Omaha.

STREETWISE. Jeff Marpe’s Line 9 Productions wrapped three days of on-the-street testimonials around Chicago on behalf of new product Saran Cutting Sheets/FCB. Director was “real people” director Laura Slutsky of New York’s Peoplefinders; cameraman Steve Wojcik. Daily Planet is editing two to three spots from the footage.

Aside: Marpe reported a good year of 24 spots last year, “actually outstanding for Chicago,” he said. His Line 9 celebrates a decade of business August 1.