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Slideshow: KISS Rocker Gene Simmons in Chicagoland

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Gene Simmons and the tongue that sold 100 million albums.

CHICAGO – Tongues were wagging as Gene Simmons, “The Demon” of the rock band KISS, made an appearance in Downers Grove, Ill., to greet fans and sign his new book “Me, Inc.: Build an Army of One, Unleash Your Inner Rock God, Win in Life and Business”. The appearance was took place on October 28th, 2014, at the Tivoli Theater and was sponsored by Anderson’s Bookshop of Napervillle, Ill.

Slideshow: Exclusive Red-Carpet Portraits at the 50th Chicago International Film Festival

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Filmmaker and activist Michael Moore introduced ‘Roger and Me.’

CHICAGO – As the 2014 edition of the 50th Chicago International Film Festival ends on October 23rd, HollywoodChicago.com spotlights the Red Carpet events with a collection of Exclusive Portraits from photographer Joe Arce. Directors are highlighted, as filmmakers ranging from Oliver Stone to Michael Moore are featured.

Slideshow: 50th Chicago International Film Festival Opening Night, Black Perspectives Gala

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Colin Farrell of ‘Miss Julie’ at the 50th Chicago International Film Festival.

CHICAGO – The 2014 edition of the 50th Chicago International Film Festival kicked off on October 9th with a spectacular presentation of “Miss Julie,” directed by the legendary Liv Ullmann, featuring Colin Ferrell and Jessica Chastain. The following evening was the Black Perspective Gala, at which the spotlight was on “Beyond the Lights,” starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood.

Slideshow: ‘Glee’ Star Chris Colfer Tours Chicagoland for New Book

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Chris Colfer at Anderson’s Bookshop for ‘The Land of Stories: A Grimm Warning.’

CHICAGO – The irrepressible character of Kurt Hummel from the popular TV series “Glee” came to Naperville, Ill. in the guise of Chris Colfer: the actor who portrays him. Colfer is also an author and was at Anderson’s Bookshop to greet fans and promote his book “The Land of Stories: A Grimm Warning”.

Slideshow: Weird Al Yankovic Releases New Parody Song ‘Tacky’

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The new single from Weird Al Yankovic is ‘Tacky.’

CHICAGO – Cyberspace has been all abuzz in the last couple of days as “Weird Al” Yankovic released his newest parody song, “Tacky,” which skewers Pharrell William’s “Happy.” The video for “Tacky” features Aisha Tyler, Margaret Cho, Kristen Schaal and Jack Black, and is part of Weird Al’s new album, “Mandatory Fun.”

Exclusive Portraits: Stars of the 2014 Chicago Critics Film Festival

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Director David Wain of ‘They Came Together,’ the Opening Night Film.

CHICAGO – The second-annual Chicago Critics Film Festival, which took place from May 9 to May 15, 2014 at the Music Box Theatre from the Chicago Film Critics Association, has been one of the best film events of 2014 in Chicago. Over seven days, films from such diverse representatives as David Wain, Martin Starr, Dick Miller and Bobcat Goldthwait were unreeled for Chicago film aficionados.

Slideshow: Morgan Freeman Honored by Gene Siskel Film Center

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Morgan Freeman honored by the Gene Siskel Film Center, June 7th, 2014.

CHICAGO – The sonorous and familiar voice of Morgan Freeman was in Chicago on June 7th, 2014, as the Gene Siskel Film Center presented “A Candid Conversation with Morgan Freeman” to benefit the theater. The event, at The Ritz-Carlton Chicago, raised more than $350,000 for the Film Center’s programming budget.

Slideshow: Adam Carolla’s New Book ‘President Me: The America That’s in My Head’

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Adam Carolla poses right before his appearance at North Central College.

CHICAGO – Adam Carolla has been making the rounds lately, to promote his new book, “President Me: The America That’s in My Head.” He came to Chicago on May 23rd, 2014, to North Central College in Naperville, Illinois and did a Q&A with Chicago Sun-Times Film Critic Richard Roeper, in addition to signing copies of the book for admirers. The event was presented by Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville.

Slideshow: 32 Exclusive Portraits from Walker Stalker Con in Chicago

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Steven Yuen portrays Glenn in ‘The Walking Dead.’

CHICAGO – There was a meeting of the undead last month as Walker Stalker Con invaded Chicago on March 14th and 15th at the Donald A. Stephens Center in Rosemont, Ill. This convention is a gathering point for zombie lovers, also known as “Walker Stalkers,” to gather and meet their favorite performers from AMC’s “The Walking Dead” and other movies and TV shows.

Slideshow: Steven Spielberg Awarded 2014 Lincoln Leadership Prize

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Actress Sally Field toasts Steven Spielberg in the presentation speech.

CHICAGO – It was a “close encounter of the legend kind” in Chicago three weeks ago, as Steven Spielberg stopped by to pick up the 2014 Lincoln Leadership Prize, given by The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation. The director was nominated for an Oscar for his sweeping portrait of the Great Emancipator, entitled “Lincoln” (2012). The actress who portrayed Mary Todd Lincoln, Sally Field, presented the award on March 19th, 2014.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Remember Me, Rita Moreno

    CHICAGO – Academy Award winner (in 1962!) Rita Moreno is in the midst of a big media comeback. The 86 year-old actress, who famously portrayed Anita in that Oscar-winning role in “West Side Story,” is in her second season of the “One Day at a Time” reboot on Netflix, and is featured in the indie film “Remember Me,” available now for download and Video On Demand.

  • Bobby Pin Girls

    CHICAGO – The “breeder years” are difficult on everyone, as the biological imperative becomes overwhelming and the couplings that result yield both discovery and misadventure. Nothing Without a Company’s new play “Bobby Pin Girls” highlight two such Millennial women, roommates who are having man trouble, although the argument can be made that it’s eternally “boy trouble.” The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Chicago Mosaic School through December 10th, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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