Aperture Series – Take 3

Aperture Series
Take 3  – Todd Looby

Screening: LOLLYWOOD and BE GOOD

Reserve Your Seats Now

Admission is FREE in Public Access Theatre
MARCH 6, 7, and 8 at 8:00 pm
MARCH 9 at 7:00 pm

Oracle Film is excited to showcase the work of award winning Chicago Filmmaker, Todd Looby.  Join us for an evening for Mr. Looby’s films, and then stick around for a talkback and reception with the filmmaker.

“Be Good” Theatrical Trailer from Todd Looby on Vimeo.

“Incisive…well crafted, acted, and observed.” – Dennis Harvey, Variety
Best Feature – United Film Festival – SF
Best Feature – United Film Festival – NY
Best Actor – Midwest Independent Film Fest
Best Screenplay – Midwest Independent Film Fest
Best Director – Victoria, TX Independent Film Festival

Oracle Film presents the APERTURE SERIES so Chicago can meet amazing filmmakers. Each series consists of a weekend dedicated to showcasing the films of independent filmmakers, providing them with an audience while offering free screenings and Q&A sessions to the community in Oracle’s Public Access Theatre.

Award-winning filmmaker Todd Looby was born and raised on the Southside of Chicago.  Todd took only two film classes at the University of Illinois while studying Environmental Sciences.  He returned to Chicago and began taking classes at Chicago’s “iO” (formerly Improv Olympic).  The following year Todd acquired a DV camera and began making films.  Initially making rudimentary documentaries and comedic shorts, Todd began tackling feature film work in late 2005 while working full-time as a commercial construction manager.

LEFTY, Todd’s second narrative feature, screened at several fests across the country and was given “4-1/2 stars” and named among “The Top 10 Movies of 2009…” bye the Chicago Tribune’s Metromix.  Looby is self-distributing LEFTY DVDs and streaming the film on Indieflix.com.  His follow-up, “Son of None”, is a narrative short Todd shot in Liberia, West Africa.  “Son of None” went on to win the Special Jury Awards at Slamdance 2011 and the Boston Film Fest.

Currently, Todd is adapting the book, A Saint on Death Row, by New York Times Best-selling author, Thomas Cahill.  He is also editing the feature-length documentary, Solo Madres:  Stories of the Families Left Behind- which he and his wife shot in Honduras.

Todd’s work often blends off-beat humor and drama in character studies that aim to entertain, inform and challenge audiences.

“Your life is going to change!” warned each young parent my wife and I ran into before our daughter, Tessa, was born. We knew it would, but we also didn’t know which parts of our life would change. In the trying first months of Tessa’s life it was clear that our engagement with the outside world would be the first casualty. The emotional attachment to Tessa informed our every thought. Our work and social consciousness – the things that seemed so important just months prior – lost most of their meaning. We were committed to creating a loving environment for Tessa, but we struggled to figure out how to also provide her with material comfort and security. That’s where things get messy in today’s economy and in the life of a non-commercial artist. My wife had a physical connection to our daughter and wanted nothing more than to stay home, but her job and benefits were our security. I wanted nothing more than to work to provide for them both, but couldn’t find a decent job, nor could I find time and interest to create. This is the central dilemma I wanted to explore in Be Good: In this day of economic dog-eat-dog, how can you be a good parent while simultaneously having meaningful work and being charitable? And every parent’s dilemma – you seemingly need ego and ambition to be successful in this world, but at what point do these things impede you from being a positive role model for your child?

As is the case with many of my films, the concepts of the film and the means of production became intertwined. Since I was at home watching Tessa all day, I figured that I needed to be doing something that might advance my career. So I drew up a detailed script outline, a schedule, a meager budget and locations that would allow us to make the film while not compromising my parental duties. Over the course of two separate weeks in June and July of 2011, we shot the film mostly in my apartment and in the picturesque Ravenswood Manor neighborhood of Chicago.

Most of the production came together after a screening of Joe Swanberg’s Uncle Kent. Joe’s baby, Jude, and Tessa were born about a week apart at the same hospital, so there was no doubt Joe and Jude would be in the film. Joe also connected me with Amy Seimetz – named among Indiewire’s “Top 25 Actors of 2011” – who generously agreed to work within our budget. Joe also connected me with accomplished no-budget Chicago filmmaker Frank V. Ross, who recorded the sound, who then connected me with filmmaker and cinematographer, Mike Gibisser. Finally, Thomas J. Madden, a professional actor, long-time friend and lead in my previous feature, LEFTY, enthusiastically agreed to play the part of Paul and help Produce the film. Working with a baby, without a budget on a tight schedule complete with nap allowances was extremely difficult, but then again…so is parenting.

– Todd Looby, Writer / Director: Be Good