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George W. Bush

Exclusive Portrait: Former First Lady Laura Bush Visits Chicagoland for New Book ‘Our Great Big Backyard’

Laura Bush, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, former First Lady Laura Bush has written a children’s book – co-authored by her daughter Jenna Bush Hager – called “Our Great Big Backyard.” Anderson’s Bookshop of Naperville, Ill., sponsored an appearance by Ms. Bush, at the North Central College there, which benefitted the Naperville Education Foundation.

Film Feature: The Top 10 Celebrity Photos of 2014, By Joe Arce

CHICAGO – In a year where shoots with perpetual photo fashionistas like Cindy Crawford and Sarah Jessica Parker still failed to crack the Top Ten list of biggest celebrity photo-ops, you know 2014 was a very good year for HollywoodChicago.com and myself, Joe Arce, as Senior Staff Photographer.

Exclusive Portrait: Former President George W. Bush in Chicagoland

George W. Bush, photo by Joe Arce.

CHICAGO – Former president George W. Bush appeared in Naperville, Ill., at Anderson’s Bookshop to promote his book, “41: A Portrait of My Father.” The tome is a memoir of the Bush patriarch, George H.W. Bush, who was the 41st president.

Film Review: Errol Morris’ ‘The Unknown Known’ Seeks Donald Rumsfeld

CHICAGO – The reason some people fit into government service is fairly well defined in the latest film of iconic documentary maker Errol Morris. His profile of ex-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in “The Unknown Known” is a tale of history – affected by war, death, torture and justification.

Film Review: ‘Inequality for All’ Becomes a Cry for Democracy

Inequality for All

CHICAGO – One of the more underreported stories of the past year is that income inequality – the gap between the wealthiest one percent in the U.S. versus the rest of the population – is at historic highs. When that balance of power is tilted, the result is documented in the new film, “Inequality for All.”

Film Review: Kevin Spacey Comes Up Aces in ‘Casino Jack’

CHICAGO – The halls of the Capitol Building are paved with money. It takes a long time beyond civics class and history to realize that. Kevin Spacey illustrates that concept precisely playing “super lobbyist” and convicted larcenist Jack Abramoff in “Casino Jack”.

Film Review: Sean Penn, Naomi Watts Revive Valerie Plame in ‘Fair Game’

Fair Game, Naomi Watts

CHICAGO – The key line in “Fair Game,” a distillation of Valerie Plame’s outing as a CIA operative in 2003, is intoned by character actor Bruce McGill, in a scene reminiscent of the “Mr. X” moment in the “JFK” movie. Pointing to the White House and the Bush Administration, he simply says, “there are the most powerful men in the history of the world.”

DVD Review: ‘Will Ferrell: You’re Welcome America: A Final Night With George W. Bush’

You're Welcome America

CHICAGO – When I first heard about Will Ferrell’s one-man Broadway show in which he would deliver a nearly-90-minute monologue as outgoing President George W. Bush, I was both excited at the potential and nervous as to how on Earth the talented comedian could keep it interesting for its full running time.

Interview: ‘Nice Bombs’ Director Usama Alshaibi, Nat Dykeman of Cinema Obscura DVD

CHICAGO – October 27th is the release date for “Nice Bombs,” a personal documentary from Cinema Obscura DVD about the homecoming of a native Iraqi to his old hometown of Baghdad, still in the midst of the Iraq War.

Interview: Writer Bill Haney, Regina Kelly on the Struggle, Uplift in ‘American Violet’

CHICAGO – In a previous interview, director Tim Disney of the new film ‘American Violet’ called his film one where “change begins, and change is possible, when individuals make choices and stand behind them.”

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Harry Lennix, photo by Joe Arce

    CHICAGO – The stage play that Harry Lennix is in town to direct – “A Small Oak Tree Runs Red” – is in its last weekend, and is giving the actor/director the best notices of the theater part in his long and successful career. For more information about the play, and ticket availability, click here.

  • Harry Lennix, photo by Joe Arce

    CHICAGO – Mention the name Harry Lennix, and images of his many character roles are bound to emerge – Harold Cooper in the TV series “The Blacklist,” General Swanwick from “Batman v Superman” and Commissioner Blades from Spike Lee’s recent “Chi-Raq.” The deeply knowledgeable Lennix brings his years of dramatic expertise, as he directs the Congo Square Theatre Company’s world premiere stage play “A Small Oak Tree Runs Red.’

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