“Stranger Things,” Energy BBDO, Rowley Samuel

A mural in the Upside Down

Netflix cancels ‘Stranger Things’ bar

Pop-up pop-culture bars are all the rage. In New York and LA, Tim Burton fans can do dinner and a show at “Beetlehouse.” Los Angeles is also home to the Star Wars-themed “Villainy and Scum” Cantina. And since August, Chicago has boasted the aptly named, “The Upside Down,” a Stranger Things bar.

When the team behind Emporium Arcade opened the bar in early August, the streaming giant apparently let the bar’s alphabet string-light communication device and cocktails like “Eleven’s Eggos” slide. Not anymore.

Netflix wants to cancel that. But in the coolest way possible!

The network, which recently inked licensing deals of their own with Funko Pop and Todd MacFarlane, has apparently served the venue with one of the coolest “cease and desist” letters in history.

It went something like this:

“Look, I don’t want you to think I’m a total wastoid, and I love how much you guys love the show. (Just wait until you see Season 2!) But unless I’m living in the Upside Down, I don’t think we did a deal with you for this pop-up. You’re obviously creative types, so I’m sure you can appreciate that it’s important to us to have a say in how our fans encounter the worlds we build. We’re not going to go full Dr. Brenner on you, but we ask that you please (1) not extend the pop-up beyond its 6-week run ending in September, and (2) reach out to us for permission if you plan to do something like this again.”

Sources say, the bar had planned to extend its run to move closer to Season 2′s premiere date in October, but will stick with its originally planned closure. Netflix could have squashed the bar instantly, but played cool dad and instead let it finish its run.

So, hurry on in, have a seat on Joyce Byers’ couch and grab a sinister sinister “Demogorgun” cocktail!

“Stranger Things” returns Oct. 27 on Netflix.

Energy BBDO promotes Pratt to EVP

Energy BBDO announced today that John Pratt has been promoted to EVP, Head of Integrated Production. He will report to CCO, Andrés Ordóñez, to lead the agency’s entire production operation, including both Flare and Flare Studio, it’s in-house production and editorial suites.

Pratt has been with Energy for nearly ten years. During that time, he led every major Wrigley production, including Extra’s “Sarah and Juan” film and the “Give Extra, get extra” platform that earned a Creative Effectiveness Lion in Cannes and six of Effies. He also produced the agency’s pro-bono efforts for the Off the Street Club, work which was just awarded two Jay Chiat awards by the 4A’s.

“John is a problem solver and one of the most resourceful producers we’ve ever had here at Energy,” Andrés Ordóñez said. “He has the ability to effortlessly wear multiple hats at once in order to champion the best possible work.”

Pratt is part of a reinvigorated creative team behind Mr. Ordóñez, who, was named CCO of Energy BBDO in April 2016. Energy experienced a fruitful summer, receiving the most North America Effies of any BBDO agency and winning six Lions at Cannes.


Rowley Samuel to partner with Gay Guthrey?

Aaaaand speaking of Energy BBDO. Earlier this month, we reported that Rowley Samuel was departing Energy BBDO after nearly seven years as their head of integrated production. At the time, no reason was still given.

But sources close to The Reel say that there is a reason and it may be that Samuel will be teaming up with longtime Chicago rep Gay Guthrey to form a new powerhouse repping company.

Right now, it’s just talk, but stay tuned to The Reel for further updates.