Chicago Fire, Betrayal, Transformers 4, Chicago PD just to name a few. Chicago is a hot bed for film production.
Most recently MovieMaker ranked Chicago as The #1 Best Place to Live and Work as a Moviemaker in 2014. In 2013 overall production was up 20% over 2012 and was up nearly 40% over 2011.
Interesting enough, back in the early 1900’s before Hollywood became the capital of film making, Chicago had the largest number of production companies and filmmakers in United States.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel even chimed in on the ever expanding film industry in Chicago and was recently quoted in a blog post by NBC 5 Chicago saying:
“This past year has been an outstanding year for film in Chicago – with major films and six full-time TV shows in production. Our success can be attributed to Chicago’s highly-respected crews and talent, world-class facilities, distinctive cinematic urban landscape, affordability and hands-on City support via the Chicago Film Office team, with a sophisticated understanding of the industry and its needs.”
If you need any other proof on why film production is so popular in Chicago, try this one on for size: One of the most iconic actors of our generation, playing characters like Han Solo, Indiana Jones, Jack Ryan and Richard Kimble is none other than…..Harrison Ford! Born and raised in Chicago! I rest my case.
Han Solo is from Chicago!
Photo provided by Wikipedia Commons courtesy of Mireille Ampilhac.
Honestly, none of this surprises me. Chicago is my kind of place and hometown for 38 years and counting. There is no place I would rather work and, more importantly, raise my family. Having said that, don’t ask me where I’d rather live after the sixty plus inches of snow we have had this winter or after about a month into a Cubs season. My answer then would probably be warm and sunny San Diego. But when it’s all said and done Chicago is where I belong. Here’s a really cool timelapse piece shot by filmmaker Max Wilson that I feel captures the Windy City in all its greatness:
Chicago Timelapse Project – Windy City Nights by Max Wilson
For the last four years I’ve been in charge of New Business Development for Richter Studios. We definitely benefit from Chicago being such a popular destination for film production and have built our team with some of the most talented people in the industry. The bustling Chicago film industry also benefits our executive production team by increasing the choices they have for on-screen talent, location scouts, set designers, and hair and makeup artists. Additionally our studio location sits in one of Chicago’s most vibrant neighborhoods, the West Loop.
Richter Studios has been nestled in the West Loop of Chicago for the last three years. This area was once only known for the “Old Barn” but now it’s for “Madhouse on Madison”, where our beloved six-time world champion Bulls and five time/defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks call there home. Yes, that’s 11 championships!
The Bulls and Blackhawks now share the neighborhood with some of the best new restaurants in Chicago (seems like a new one opens up weekly), new condos/apartments and Richter Studios.
This great neighborhood also allows us a great platform for entertaining clients. The dining and nightlife options are endless. The only problem is deciding on the right bar/restaurant to attend for a proper commercial or photo shoot “wrap” party.
Who’s up for a fun get-together to talk cinema and Chicago in the West Loop? Looking forward to reading your comments!