Oscar

Oscar Week: Co-Directors Explain How ‘Ralph Breaks the Internet’

Ralph Breaks the Internet

CHICAGO – The Best Animated Film category at the 91st Academy Awards honor both these visual treats and their status in the new Golden Age. The visual density of today’s animation reaches a new height in a rare Walt Disney Studio sequel, “Ralph Breaks the Internet.” This is a follow-up to “Wreck-It Ralph,” a huge animated hit film. Returning to guide the sequel, which has Wreck-It Ralph “inside” the internet, are co-directors Phil Johnston and Rich Moore.

Oscar Week: Directors Betsy West & Julie Cohen on Their Nominated Documentary ‘RBG’

RBG Ruth Bader Ginsburg

CHICAGO – Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the notorious “RBG,” has been a steady and abiding voice on that high court since 1993. But how much do we really know about this unassuming and highly admired jurist? Co-directors Betsy West and Julie Cohen answer this question in their documentary “RBG.” The film is one of five nominees competing for gold in the Feature Documentary category, to be given on Sunday at the 91st Academy Awards.

Oscar Week: Interview with Nominees Yalitza Aparicio & Marina de Tavira of ‘Roma’

ROMA Actors, Photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – One of the more pleasant surprises of the 2018 film year was the rise of the connectively expressive film “Roma,” written and directed by Alfonso Cuarón. Not only is it nominated for Best Picture, Best Foreign Language Film and Best Director at the 91st Academy Awards, but the two lead actresses – Yalitza Aparicio and Maria de Tavira – are nominated for Best Actress and Supporting Actress. Jon Lennon Espino, contributor at HollywoodChicago.com, interviewed both actresses last October at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival.

Oscar Week: Podtalk with Director Bing Liu of Oscar nominated Feature Doc ‘Minding the Gap’

Minding the Gap, directed by Bing Liu

CHICAGO – All through the 2019 Oscar Week, HollywoodChicago.com will rerun significant articles from 2018 that feature the nominees associated with Sunday’s Academy Award ceremony. Today is a Podtalk with director Bing Liu, who was the filmmaker behind a Best Documentary Feature nominee, “Minding the Gap.” The film seems to be a nostalgic profile of Liu’s youth in Rockford, Illinois, as he goes back to his hometown to explore the skateboarding culture that kept him balanced while growing up in a difficult home environment. What he found out about himself was an organic reveal in the film, both shocking and cathartic.

Film Review: Relatable Togetherness Highlight 2019 Oscar Nominated Animated Short Films

2019 Oscar Animated Shorts

CHICAGO – The relationships in our lives affect who we are, whether they are momentary or long term. Interestingly, like the Oscar nominated Live Action shorts, the Animated Short Film nominees have that similar connective themes in four of the five stories. Family relationships, son-to-mother, mother-to-daughter, daughter-to-father and parents-to-child, are explored in poignant and expressive ways. The Landmark Century Centre Cinema in Chicago are currently showing all the shorts in one program. Click here for more information.

Film Review: Childhood is a Major Theme in 2019 Oscar Nominated Live Action Short Films

2019 Oscar Live Action Shorts

CHICAGO – There are four films among the five Oscar-nominated Live Action Shorts for 2019 that have childhood in their theme, and they all are telling about situations in the more in-your-face dark circumstances of life today (or in the case of one film, 25 years ago). The Landmark Century Centre Cinema in Chicago are currently showing all the shorts in one program. Click here for more information.

Film News: 2019 Oscar Nominations includes ‘Minding the Gap,’ by Chicago’s Kartemquin Films

CHICAGO – Chicago’s Kartemquin Films continues their winning streak, as director Bing Liu’s “Minding the Gap” scores an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary. The 91st Academy Awards will take place on February 24th, 2019.

Film Feature: HollywoodChicago.com Remembers Neil Simon

CHICAGO – Writer Neil Simon was an American treasure, and created humor that anchored his often neurotic characters into our consciousness. From his early days in 1950s TV (“Your Show of Shows”) to winning a 1990s Pulitzer Prize for “Lost in Yonkers,” he refined and produced “the laugh.” Simon died on August 26th, 2018, at age 91, in New York City.

Slideshow, Audio: Photos & Interviews at Chicago’s ‘a Night with Oscar’ on March 4, 2018

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Actor Tom Lenk on the Red Carpet at ‘a Night with the Oscar.’

CHICAGO – It was super finery and ultimate glam at the Park West in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood on Academy Awards night, March 4th, 2018, where “a Night with Oscar” took place. The event, which was a benefit for Center on Halsted and presented by Comcast/NBCUniversal, combined food, drink, Red Carpet and Oscar viewing revelry with information about the support that Center on Halsted provides for the LGBTQ+ community in Chicago. The event was co-hosted by variety of local notables, including Lee Ann Trotter, who covers entertainment for the local NBC5 news.

Oscar Week: ‘a Night with Oscar’ Benefit for Center on Halsted in Chicago on March 4, 2018

aNightfront.jpg

CHICAGO – Glamour, glitz, fun and the Academy Awards will be an event at the Park West in Chicago, as Comcast/NBCUniversal Presents “a Night with Oscar” on Sunday, March 4th, 2018, a benefit for Center on Halsted. The Academy Awards Viewing Party will feature a Live Red Carpet Arrival with Special Guests, Silent Auction/Raffle, Best Dressed Competition, and a full Open Bar/Buffet. For more information and link to tickets, click here.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Grace, Or the Art of Climbing

    CHICAGO – What is life but a constant climb? The Brown Paper Box Co., one of the most vital storefront theater groups in Chicago, asks that question and more in the significant “Grace, Or the Art of Climbing.” Using a woman’s journey through some difficult situations, the parallels of “the climb” become a artfully performed story that is all inspiration and uplift. The play runs through July 7th, 2019, at Stage 773 in the Belmont Avenue Theater District in Chicago. For more information and tickets, click here.

  • Elizabeth Laidlaw

    CHICAGO – The recent limited series “The Red Line” on CBS-TV was notable for a couple elements – it was set in Chicago and it featured Chicago actors in major roles. Creators Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss (from here), cast their Chi-town colleague Elizabeth Laidlaw, who portrayed police officer “Vic” Renna.

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