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Exclusive Portrait: Al Roker at 60th Chicago Intl Film Festival Gala

CHICAGO – I have a new appreciation for Al Roker. Already acknowledged as a famous weatherman and TV host, the “Today Show” staple can add raucous comedian to his resume, as indicated by his hosting duties at the 60th Chicago International Film Festival’s Summer Gala on June 1st, 2024. He killed, as they say.

Exclusive Portraits: John C. Reilly at 60th Chicago Intl Film Festival Gala

CHICAGO – You’ll never hear a better speech about the actor’s gratitude for his hometown than John C. Reilly’s proclamation at the 60th Chicago International Film Festival’s Summer Gala on June 1st, 2024. He brought the house down with emotional and passionate words about his journey that began in the Windy City.

Exclusive Portraits: Superstar Renée Fleming at Chicago Humanities

CHICAGO – When the word “Opera” is defined today, the person that would illustrate the word is Renée Fleming. The lyric soprano has done most major female opera roles, and has written a new book … “Music and Mind: Harnessing the Arts for Health and Wellness” … and recently appeared at the Chicago Humanities Festival.

Exclusive Portrait: KiKi Layne of ‘Dandelion’ at 2024 Chicago Film Critics Fest on May 6th

CHICAGO – “Dandelion” was the centerpiece film at the 2024 Chicago Critics Film Festival (CCFF) on May 6th, and featured an appearance by the actor portraying the title character, KiKi Layne (“If Beale Street Could Talk”). Ms. Layne walked the Red Carpet at Chicago’s historic Music Box Theatre.

Exclusive Portraits: Director Pamela Adlon of ‘Babes’ at Chicago Critics Film Fest, May 4, 2024

Pamela Adlon, CCFF 2024

CHICAGO – The excellent new film “Babes,” which screened at the 2024 Chicago Critics Film Festival (CCFF) on May 4th, was the feature film director debut from a familiar name … Pamela Adlon (“Better Things”). Ms. Adlon walked the Red Carpet at Chicago’s historic Music Box Theatre.

Exclusive Photos: Super Bowl Sunday with Comedian Maria Bamford

CHICAGO – Maria Bamford has been a top comic force since her breakthrough in the first decade of the millennium. She will be appearing on the Super Bowl Sunday edition of CBS-TV’s @FTER MIDNIGHT, the new show hosted by Taylor Tomlinson after “Late Night with Stephen Colbert.” Appearing alongside her will be A-listers Wayne Brady and Kevin Smith.

Exclusive Photo: Cinema Royalty & Character Actor Bob Balaban

CHICAGO – The seemingly middle-of-the-road character actor Bob Balaban has more to his legacy than just a ton of appearances from the 1960s to present in classic films and TV. His Chicago family were pioneers in film exhibition and the movie executive suite during the studio system in the early days of the history of film. It is in his DNA.

Exclusive Photos: Ed Begley Jr. Wants You to Make Resolutions

CHICAGO – Although Ed Begley Jr. has had hundreds of roles in TV and film, he is most likely best known as an activist for environmental and sustainability concerns. He highlighted his latest book, “To the Temple of Tranquility…and Step on It!” at the Fall 2023 Chicago Humanities Festival, and HollywoodChicago.com got the Exclusive Photos and Interview.

In Memoriam: Nichelle Nichols, Uhura in Original ‘Star Trek’

Nichelle Nichols, photo by Joe Arce

SILVER CITY, N.M.– No more can Uhura communicate. The ground breaking actor who originated the role of Nyota Uhura, the Communications Officer on The Original Series (TOS) “Star Trek,” passed away on July 30th at her home in New Mexico. Nichelle Nichols was 89. Photographer Joe Arce of HollywoodChicago.com took this Exclusive Portrait in Chicago in 2018.

Slideshow: Molly Shannon at Chicago Humanities Festival for New Book ‘Hello Molly!'

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Molly Shannon at the Chicago Humanities Fest, April 13, 2022.

CHICAGO – Book Tour season has begun, and the Chicago Humanities Festival welcomed a prominent new author to their event. Molly Shannon, the raucous comic actor of “Saturday Night Live” fame, has written a new memoir entitled “Hello Molly!” On April 13th, 2022, Shannon appeared at the Humanities Festival with fellow SNL alum (and veteran of The Second City) Tim Meadows.

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  • Prodigal Daughter, The

    CHICAGO – One of the open secrets of Chicago is its horrible racist past, which remains like an echo. Playwright Joshua Allen has been exploring this theme in his Grand Boulevard Trilogy – the last chapter talking place during the infamous 1919 race riots – in Raven Theatre’s “The Prodigal Daughter.” For tickets and info, click TPD.

  • Michael Shannon and Travis A. Knight, Red Orchid's TURRET

    CHICAGO – When in the presence of a powerful acting force like Michael Shannon, the depth of performance is emotional and passionately essential. He co-leads with Travis A. Knight in Red Orchid Theatre’s World Premiere of Levi Holloway’s “Turret,” just extended to June 22nd at the Chopin Theatre.

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