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Interview: Director Rick Alverson Knows That’s ‘Entertainment’

CHICAGO – It’s original, it’s off-kilter, it’s different – it’s the new film “Entertainment.” Rick Alverson has fashioned a road picture, with an offbeat stand up comic trying to get home. The director has some fiery talent behind that journey, including Gregg Turkington as The Comedian, John C. Reilly, Michael Cera and Tim Heidecker.

Interview: Screenwriter David Wilson Represents ‘Spirit Riders’ at Equus Film Festival

David Wilson of 'Spirit Riders'

CHICAGO – The first big breakthrough for any screenwriter is a momentous occasion, and David Wilson has done just that. The shot-on-a-shoestring indie family film “Spirit Riders” – written by Wilson – has had a great afterlife in limited release, Video-On-Demand, DVD, foreign distribution and online digital downloads. And this upcoming weekend, from November 20 to 22, 2015, Wilson will represent his story, about Equine Therapy, at the Equus Film Festival in New York City.

Interview: Director Jay Roach Channels His Inner ‘Trumbo’

CHICAGO – Director Jay Roach loves his work, heading into another phase of his successful career. The man who directed the first two “Austin Powers” films is now taking on movie and American history with “Trumbo,” featuring Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad”) as the 1950s blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo.

Interview: Producer Marla Gamze to Present ‘Artists of the First Sunrise’ in Chicago on Nov. 14, 2015

Artists of the First Sunrise

CHICAGO – The traditions and ceremony of our tribal past have eventually become homogenized in modern society. But there are some parts of the world where those traditions still exist, and much of it has a connection to art, dance, design, music and ritual. Executive Producer Marla Gamze is working on a new documentary – “Artists of the First Sunrise” – about the indigenous Aboriginal tribes of Australia, a native population that still bond to their tradition and expression.

Interview: Director Patricia Riggen is Counting on ‘The 33’

CHICAGO – When a disaster strikes, often the most unlikely people will become the primary responders. This is the premise for “The 33,” a new feature film about the Chilean mining collapse in 2010, which trapped 33 men for 69 days. The film goes deep inside the event, and is directed with due respect by Patricia Riggen.

Interview: Director Gaspar Noé Interprets His New Film ‘Love’

Love, directed by Gaspar Noé

CHICAGO – The practice of addictive or obsessive love is often played out through a couple’s sexual energy, rather than their ability to get along in the day-to-day. This is explicitly portrayed in the new film “Love,” a France and Belgium film written and directed by Argentinian Gaspar Noé, and featuring American actor Karl Glusman and French actress Aomi Muyock as the couple.

Interview: Linda Gray of ‘Dallas’ on Larry Hagman & Her New Book ‘The Road to Happiness’

CHICAGO – In the summer of 1980, the whole nation was obsessed with one question – “Who shot J.R.?” J.R. was J.R. Ewing, portrayed by Larry Hagman, and the TV show that provided that question was “Dallas.” The role of J.R.’s long suffering wife on the show was portrayed by Linda Gray, who has written a new memoir.

Interview: Director Sarah Gavron Revives the History in ‘Suffragette’


CHICAGO – One decade before the United States gave women the right to vote, it was Britain leading the way before World War One. Their techniques for convincing the staid patriarchy was a series of anarchistic actions, as depicted in the new film “Suffragette,” featuring Carey Mulligan and Meryl Streep, and directed by Sarah Gavron.

Interview: Director Sebastián Silva Delivers a ‘Nasty Baby’

Nasty Baby

CHICAGO – “Nasty Baby” is a family film, with a family that consists of a gay/mixed race couple, and their best girlfriend who wants to have a baby with them. This unconventionality is made less remarkable simply because the characters are all motivated by their own fragile egos – which sometimes is good, and sometimes not so much.

Interviews: City & State Short Film Directors at 51st Chicago International Film Festival

CHICAGO – The future of filmmaking was on display at the 51st Chicago International Film Festival at the City & State Short Film program. Subtitled “Feel the Illinoise,” the collection included works by directors Bradley Bischoff, Joel Benjamin, Ed Flynn, Andy Berlin, Jake Zalutsky and Weija Ma.

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  • Sherlock Holmes with David Arquette (teaser)

    CHICAGO – Different isn’t bad and might be great, but you’d better have an irrefutable reason to change what was never broken. Campy being the only word to accurately convey this alternate-reality version of Sherlock Holmes with an original script, writer Greg Kramer and director Andrew Shaver try too hard to be different without ever figuring out why.

  • Merry Widow, The

    CHICAGO – Standing up at the Lyric Opera house in Chicago is unusual before a show. But in this case, it was the night after a tragedy, and the operetta “The Merry Widow” – set in Paris, France, in 1905 – was about to unfold. The orchestra struck up La Marseillaise, a reminder that we’ll always have Paris.


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