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Chicago Filmmakers Officially Open Their New Home In Edgewater

It has been an exciting journey for the Chicago Filmmakers to build their new home at the old Edgewater firehouse at 5720 N. Ridge Ave. This past weekend and they officially opened their doors with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

The event held on Saturday allowed the Filmmakers to showcase their new location and what they have to offer to the community. Alderman Harry Osterman helped with the cutting ceremony along with Chicago Filmmakers Executive Director Brenda Webb and many supporters who helped the organization in their endeavors. Actor Chris Stolte who is one of the stars of NBC’s Chicago Fire was also there to celebrate.

Chicago Filmmakers is a not-for-profit media arts organization that fosters the creation, appreciation, and understanding of film and video as media for artistic and personal expression, as well as media of important social and community impact, according to the organization’s website.

Its mission is two-fold: To serve independent film and digital video artists by supporting the creation and dissemination of new media arts works, and to serve Chicago audiences by screening artistically innovative, socially relevant, and diverse films and videos.

“This move will allow Chicago Filmmakers to expand the many programs, classes, and workshops they offer for people of all ages in filmmaking, cinema, and media arts,” said Osterman in a statement. “The conversion of the firehouse into a space that can be used and enjoy for cultural and community purposes by our neighbors has been a priority of mine since first being elected Alderman. Chicago Filmmakers offering filmmaking classes and great cinema at the heart of our community will be a benefit for our neighborhood for many years to come.” 

The Chicago Filmmakers were chosen in 2013 from a long list of organizations who wanted to purchase the firehouse for their programming. They bought the 5,892 sq. ft. Chicago historic landmark building (built in 1928) in March, 2016 for $36,000. Since then they have gutted the once decaying structure.

The new space now includes a new movie theater, elevator, exit stairs, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, sewer and water lines. The Filmmakers worked with award-winning architectural firm Bureau of Architecture and Design and Finnegan Development. The total cost of the project was around $1 million.


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