Director and University of Illinois graduate Ang Lee, left, and Guillermo del Toro
Chris Pizello/Associated Press
January 21, 2016

Filmmaker Del Toro Attending 18th Ebertfest With ‘Crimson Peak’

Writer/Director Guillermo Del Toro will be the opening night guest at the 18th annual Roger Ebert's Film Festival, April 13th at Champaign's Virginia Theater, accompanying his 2015 film "Crimson Peak." Further films will be announced in the coming weeks.


Bruce (middle) discussing protocol with Rob James-Collier (Tomas, left) and Kevin Doyle (Mr. Mosley, right).
Courtesy of Masterpiece
January 04, 2016

Downton Abbey Historical Adviser On Season Six, Filming And More

Downton Abbey season six, the final season, premiered in the U.S. yesterday to great acclaim. It wouldn’t look the way it does or be so historically accurate, however, if it weren’t for Alastair Bruce. The cast and crew of Downton Abbey, Masterpiece’s smash hit about the Crawley family and their servants call Bruce, the show’s historical advisor, “The Oracle” because he knows everything about the customs and protocols of the time period. 


A screen grab from the Star Wars movie.
Walt Disney Studios
December 21, 2015

‘Star Wars’ Awakens A New Generation

University of Illinois students and Roger Ebert Fellows Ashish Valentine, Riane Lenzner-White and Shalayne Pulia reviewed the opening-night screening of The Force Awakens and convened in the studios of Chicago Public Radio to discuss what the Star Wars phenomenon meant (or didn’t mean) to them, going into the film.


Portrait of Julie Turnock
University of Illinois
December 15, 2015

‘Star Wars’ Franchise Continues To Drive Movie Special Effects

One of the many ways Star Wars has changed the movie industry since the first movie came out in 1977 is through special effects.  Much of the industry standard in special effects even today has its roots in the original Star Wars trilogy of the late 1970’s and early 80’s.  That’s according to Julie Turnock, a professor of media and cinema studies at the University of Illinois Urbana campus.  She spoke with Illinois Public Media's Brian Moline this week.


Courtesy of Masterpiece
December 14, 2015

Downton Abbey Historical Adviser Alastair Bruce On Filming, Manners Special

The cast and crew of Downton Abbey, Masterpiece’s smash hit about the Crawley family and their servants call Historical Advisor Alistair Bruce “The Oracle” because he knows everything about the customs and protocols of the time period. Bruce is in town to share some of that knowledge and secrets about filming the show at the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts tonight.


Celtic Woman, Left to Right: Éabha McMahon, Susan McFadden, Máiréad Carlin, Máiréad Nesbitt
Kip Carroll
October 02, 2015

Máiréad Nesbitt Of Celtic Woman: Last Ten Years Have Been A ‘Wonderful Journey’

Máiréad Nesbitt is the only original member of the Irish group Celtic Woman, which started as a one-off PBS special over ten years ago. In anticipation of their appearance at the Virginia Theater this weekend, Illinois Public Media’s Amanda Honigfort talked with Nesbit about the last ten years and what she and the rest of Celtic Woman have in the works. 


Main Library at the University of Illinois
(Wikipedia)
August 17, 2015

UI Main Library Benefits From Business’ Closure

The crowdfunding campaign led by U of I Technology Services employee Dena Strong (and aided by library grant funds) brought in around 1,000 hard to find DVD's and Blu-Ray's with the closure of a popular Campustown business.


The front window of That's Rentertainment in Champaign, in the local businesses' final weeks.
(Jeff Bossert/WILL)
August 14, 2015

Champaign’s ‘Renter’ Closing Its Doors

For employees and regular customers, the closure of That's Rentertainment means the loss of a social outlet, and something that can't be recreated through online streaming of material, or even a Facebook page.  Champaign-Urbana's last locally owned video store closes Sunday. 


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