Editor’s Note: They are leaders. They are inspirational. They are mentors. They are visionaries. They are, quite frankly, badasses. They are our 2020 Reel Women During Women’s History Month, you will be able to meet these incredible personalities in Advertising, Entertainment, Media and Production. Get ready.
Laurie is a native Chicagoan who enjoys being a patron of the arts and helping others. Laurie went to college at DePaul University where she studied Digital Cinema & Computer Science. She’s naturally curious about people and is passionate about telling interesting stories that open people’s hearts and minds.
Laurie is the Sales & Marketing Executive Producer for The Whitehouse Post & Carbon VFX in Chicago. She brings with her over a decade of experience in Post Production. Her background includes collaborations on campaigns for high-profile clients including Porsche, Guinness, Prada, Netflix, and HBO.
Laurie has an innate trustworthiness with a broad range of clients and a deep sense of care for her work as well as consistently ensuring her team delivers premium quality creative from the onset of a project through to the final delivery.
What did you originally want to be when you grow up?
A Computer Scientist. I like technology when it’s used w/ humanity by people who wouldn’t ever take advantage of the “End User” & knowingly make them a victim.
How did you get into the film industry?
Shout out to David Axelbaum for hiring me to be his receptionist at Airstream Audio the summer before my Senior year at DePaul.
Also shout out to the man, the hair, the legend Brian Gannon for getting me an interview at Whitehouse when I graduated. He told me I had to wear a suit to the interview and everyone thought I was super uptight haha…thankfully they took a chance on me and the rest is history.
Who were your mentors?
My parents. They instilled in me a value and importance of service to our community. That it’s our responsibility, to make our world a better place. My folks met in 20th century Chicago. They’re true blue Chicagoans, and they have that democratic spirit. That fundamental belief that Chicago was, is, and should be a good place to grow up.
Within the film world it would have to be Matthew Wood. Producing for Matthew I learned the power of good creative and the value of film craft. I also learned how to follow your crazy. Beautiful things can happen when you ignore the “rules.”
What is your greatest achievement?
My friends (Topher Cochrane & Ross Gerber) & I made a feature length documentary called “Chasing Bubbles” – it’s a beautiful story (no bias, obvi) about our friend who sailed around the world & never met a stranger.
What is your biggest disappointment?
Sam’s Grill closing.
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What are your biggest pet peeves?
Lack of humanity. Everyone has a bad day once in a while tho. I always try to kill everyone with kindness – it’s a better vibe.
What are your predictions for the film industry over the next decade?
When Film was celluloid, it was a medium you needed a lot of money and power to work in. I feel lucky to have come up during the digital film revolution.
It’s no secret that shooting, editing, and distributing film digitally is democratizing the medium.
In the next 10 years, as we see more female filmmakers, more filmmakers of color, and more filmmakers from varied socioeconomic backgrounds telling their stories, I think we’ll see the medium evolve dramatically – we’re already seeing a shift. It’s beautiful.
A wave of fresh voices the size of a generation. New genre’s will arrive with this generation of filmmakers from communities and backgrounds just discovering their cinematic voices.
Name a job you had that would surprise people.
I interned at Fox News Chicago…for the consumer reports segment…so I guess it’s not that surprising…ha 😉 (Thanks Niena Drake for being the GOAT)
Who plays you in your life story?
Julianne Moore is working with a Chicago accent coach, and we’re shooting her screen test in April.
What do you wish you had more time to do?
Produce passion projects. I already do a lot of them, but I wish I had time to do them all. Also hang out with my football team of nephews
Do you talk to yourself?
No, I just pick up the phone and facetime my friends. Even if you’re busy, you can make a phone date with a friend. Get organized. Jeez.
What inspires you to be creative?
Passionate folks trying to do good. Passion is contagious. I love to help, and make stuff with, people who are passionate about what they’re making.