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Slideshow: Chicago International Film Festival TV Awards Slated for April 22. 2015

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CIFF TV Artistic Achievement Award honoree. Jesse Spencer of ‘Chicago Fire.’

CHICAGO – The Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) kicks off its 51st year by presenting their annual Television Awards on April 22, 2015. The Awards honors innovative and outstanding members of the television community, in production and advertising. The honorees include Whitehouse Post production house, TV newscaster Jay Levine (Investigative Journalism) and ‘Chicago Legend in Advertising’ Tom Burrell.

TV News: NBC Struggles on Wednesday Nights, CBS Wins Close Ratings War

The Neighbors

CHICAGO – The first new Wednesday of the Fall 2012 season told a predictable story — CBS and ABC are doing well, FOX is still under-delivering, and NBC is in dire shape. As for new shows, “The Neighbors” was well-sampled out of mega-hit “Modern Family” but we’ll see if that lasts while “Animal Practice” and “Guys with Kids” can practically feel the blade of the cancellation axe already.

TV News: CBS Announces Fall Schedule With Changes to Every Night

CHICAGO – What do you do when your iron grip on success is getting weaker? Shake things up. That’s what CBS is doing this Fall by shuffling their line-up more significantly than any other network and adding five new series, which are detailed below.

TV Review: ‘Castle’ Returns With Same Strengths, Flaws

Castle

CHICAGO – The best thing about the third-season premiere of the consistently-entertaining “Castle” may be that they’ve finally taken that stupid “Turner & Hooch” line out of the introduction to the hit mystery show. Other than that, the show pretty much picks up where it left off with two of the most charismatic stars on television often disguising the fact that the writing doesn’t live up to their talents.

TV Review: Manipulative, Messy ‘Miami Medical’

Miami Medical

CHICAGO – Television drama is usually a formulaic proposition but rarely has a show been more blatantly derivative of other programs currently on the air than CBS’s new hospital drama, “Miami Medical,” a bizarre, ineffective hybrid of “CSI: Miami” and “Trauma”. Buried in the ratings nether regions of Friday nights, this Jerry Bruckheimer-produced show might just barely deliver for viewers exhausted after a long week of work, but they’ll have forgotten it by Saturday morning.

TV Review: ‘NCIS: Los Angeles’ Has Breakout Potential as Hottest New Show

NCIS: Los Angeles

CHICAGO – Doesn’t it feel like there will someday just be a few mystery franchises with several different iterations on the air? We have three versions of “Law & Order” and “CSI,” and now “NCIS” has joined in, expanding the franchise of this surprisingly popular show to “NCIS: Los Angeles” with appealing stars Chris O’Donnell and L.L. Cool J.

TV Review: ‘Castle’ Continues to Improve With Season-Two Premiere

Castle Season Two

CHICAGONathan Fillion and Stana Katic bring their spectacular chemistry back for another season of the increasingly enjoyable “Castle,” a mystery-of-the-week show distinguished by excellent writing and some of the best lead chemistry on television.

CBS Renews ‘Cold Case,’ Picks Up ‘Medium,’ Cancels ‘Without a Trace’

Medium

CHICAGO – In a relatively shocking announcement as a part of fall schedule upfronts this week, CBS actually pulled the trigger on “Without a Trace,” a show that had reportedly gotten too expensive for the network. There were rumors that they may do the same with “Cold Case,” but that show will return with on-the-bubble shows “The New Adventures of Old Christine” and “Rules of Engagement” also being miraculously renewed and “Medium” being saved.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret

    CHICAGO – When faced with adversity, the best way around it is to somehow break into song. That is the feeling behind the Brown Paper Box Co.’s “Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret,” running April 7th and 8th at Mary’s Attic in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood. The event features company member Kristi Szczepanek as host, and presents song stylings by other company members, including Anna Schutz, plus some special guests. For details and ticket information, click here.

  • Kid Thing, The

    CHICAGO – Like the awesome Engine Who Could, the mighty Nothing Without a Company stage crafters have constructed another triumph at their new home in Berger Mansion on Chicago’s north side. “The Kid Thing” – written by Sarah Gubbins – is a terse, convincing and emotional play about fear, identity and breeding, and it is performed by its cast of five with utter authenticity. The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Berger North Mansion through April 15th, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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