Sunday, October 11, 2009

"Chicago Overcoat" Film Locations

In "Chicago Overcoat," Lou Marazano (Frank Vincent), a has-been hit man who hung up his weapons in the 1980s, comes out of retirement 20 years later to resume his career as a triggerman for the Chicago Outfit. John Bosher, who co-wrote the movie with fellow alums from Columbia College Chicago, says they looked for locations that represented the gritty underbelly of Chicago. Here are descriptions of a few of the more than 50 locations of the film, which is being screened as part of the Chicago International Film Festival, gathered from a phone interview with Bosher.

--Franco's Ristorante, 300 W. 31st St.: This corner spot in Bridgeport is used for exterior shots of the place where the gangsters hang out.

Cobra Lounge, 235 N. Ashland Ave.: The filmmakers removed the modern-day decor of this late-night spot and transformed it into a gathering place for the gangsters that looks like a 1980s strip club. Additions included poles for the strippers and a stage with a glass floor lit from below.

La Villa Restaurant & Banquet, 3636 N. Pulaski Rd.: This Italian restaurant stands in for the interior of Franco's Ristorante.

Nicky's Carry Out, 3501 S. Western Ave.: Lou takes his young grandson to this small McKinley Park spot to introduce him to a Chicago-style hot dog and a serving of life's lessons.

George's Automotive Repair, 3209 W. Barry Ave.: Lou and a young member of his crew mosey in to this neighborhood shop to shake down the owner. They do a bit of damage when he refuses to pay a street tax.

Alley at Franklin and Superior streets: Dumpsters stand against the brick wall of this dark alley where Lou gets back to work as a hit man.

Under the Dan Ryan Expressway at Cermak Road and Halsted Street: Imposing columns tower over this secluded space where Lou has a rendezvous with disgruntled members of the Outfit. The filmmakers wanted to give the shoot-out the feel of a scene in a Hollywood Western.

Police station, 2259 S. Damen Ave.: An abandoned Chicago Police station was cleaned up, furnished and rehabbed as a room where Lou is interrogated and placed in a lineup. Windows that had been boarded up were opened, and a Metro Police station sign was put up so as not to confuse the fictional police officers who behave badly in the film with Chicago's finest.

Thanks to Nancy Maes

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