Special Episode: Friday Night Flicks

Mar 26, 2021

We're a year into the pandemic and we've all found creative ways to share our movie experiences. Three of our Front Row contributors have found a way to stay connected and share movies they love. Join Craig, Anna and Brandon as they recount the past year of long-distance movie viewing each Friday night. You'll find movies of almost every genre represented in the conversation. We hope it inspires you to share the movies you love with friends both near and far.

Paris Visone

We are thrilled to welcome Chris DeMakes of Less Than Jake to the show! Chris is the lead vocalist and guitarist for the band. Their new album Silver Linings was just released last week. Craig and Scott have been fans of Less Than Jake for over twenty years, and had a lot of questions for Chris. The interview covers the new album, Chris' favorites from the bands 28 year career, his new podcast and much more. Thanks for listening and be sure to subscribe to The Front Row Network!

FEATURING: Craig McFarland, Scott McFarland

*This interview does include explicit content*   


MonsterCast continues to close strong! We're proud to debut an interview we conducted all the way back in March at C2E2 with horror mainstay Sandy King Carpenter. Aside from being the wife of horror master John Carpenter, Sandy has blazed a trail in entertainment as a film producer and script writer. She talks to our own Alex Orona about the launch of Storm King Comics and why she loves the comic book world so much.

FEATURING: Alex Orona (Super GG Radio)

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MonsterCast just can't be stopped! We're continuing our look at some amazing horror shorts by welcoming the writer and director of our top choice of the 2018 Huluween Film Fest, Josh Tanner, to talk his inspiration and behind the scenes stories from The Rizzle.

FEATURING: Jeremy Goeckner

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An Interview with Leslie Iwerks about her new film "Selling Lies"

Oct 8, 2020

The 2020 election is fast approaching, and voters are not only deciding whom to vote for, but also, what to believe. According to filmmaker Leslie Iwerks, understanding the truth in media can be “tricky.”

Iwerks has been researching fake news for her new short documentary “Selling Lies,” which is available to stream on Oct. 9, on ShortsTV, iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Vimeo on Demand just a few short weeks before Election Day.

© 2019 Clayton Hauck. Courtesy of 50 Eggs Films

“Rowing is as old as time itself. And for so long the terrain of favorite sons of famous families in places far, far away from the West Side; light years away.” Mary Mazzio’s new documentary A Most Beautiful Thing is about the first African American high school rowing team in the US. At least that’s what you would think at first glance. As the film slowly unfolds it becomes very clear that what this film is up to runs much, much deeper. 

INTERVIEW - "Greyhound" Director Aaron Schneider

Jul 23, 2020
Apple TV+

Apple TV+ has released their biggest movie swing yet with the truly epic and sweeping World War II drama Greyhound. Written by and staring Tom Hanks, this film tells the tale of an American battleship as it attempts to escort a much needed fleet of supply ships across the Atlantic. As the fleet loses air cover in the area known as The Pit, a German U-Boat fleet arrives and starts a deadly chase for survival. We were honored to be able to talk with the director of this fantastic film Mr. Aaron Schneider.

ACE Universe

It’s easy to see why people would gravitate towards ACE Comic Con. Didn’t get your convention fill this year? Trying to meet that one last celebrity? Tired of waiting for hours to go to that panel only to be turned away due to max capacity? ACE is the place to be - billed as a family and fan first experience, as well as something different than the typical convention.

Front Row Special
Wizard World

We had the honor and total blast of being included with the press to cover Wizard World Comic-Con St. Louis 2019. We had an absolute blast covering all 3 days of this insanely well-run event and are proud to bring you all of our celebrity and artist interviews all rolled into one. Enjoy and look for our continuing con coverage with San Diego this week and our reports from Heroes & Villains and the Walker Stalker Cons in Chicago. Enjoy!

FEATURING: Jeremy Goeckner, Steve Sykes and Kyle Hudson

J.B. Pritzker
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Democratic nominee for governor J.B. Pritzker broke the record for self-funding this week. He’s now contributed more than $160 million to his effort to defeat incumbent Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner.

The campaign between the two mega-wealthy candidates has featured dozens of political ads, personal attacks, and legal troubles.

Pritzker sat down with NPR Illinois to talk about what would be the priorities for the start of his administration, his plan to shift the state from a flat tax to a graduated income tax and claims of discrimination against his campaign.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois government has been deadlocked on a state budget for 23 months. During that time, the once-perfunctory job of comptroller has gained in power and prominence.


U.S. Senator Mark Kirk says he apologized, and that apology was accepted, so it's time to move on from a controversial comment he made at last week's debate minimizing his opponent's family legacy of military service. The Republican gave an interview to public radio on Wednesday; click below to listen to the bulk of it.

Rep. Frank Mautino reviews a COGFA report.
WUIS/Illinois Issues

The head of the Democratic Party of Illinois is sticking up for the beleaguered Auditor General.

Steve Brown

 As Chairman of the Democratic Party of Illinois, House Speaker Michael Madigan ran the show for Illinois’ delegation last week at the Democratic National Convention.

Madigan took some time before the convention wrapped up to sit down in Philadelphia with Illinois Public Radio Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky and WBBM radio's Craig Dellimore.

They touch on everything from term limits to Donald Trump, to the state budget and the November election. 

Amanda Vinicky

For only the second time this year, Gov. Bruce Rauner and the four legislative leaders are set to meet, Tuesday, in Springfield.  It comes as Illinois' historic budget stalemate yawns into May, with two weeks left in legislators' regular session schedule.

These "leaders' meetings" are private, but NPR Illinois Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky had the chance to get some perspective about where the leaders stood going into the confab. 

ICPR website

The state of Illinois may be running a deficit, but many of its leaders' campaign accounts are flush.

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform tracks their spending, and has ideas on how to improve the system.

For this episode of The Players, your look into who's who in Illinois government and politics and waht they're up to, Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky talked about campaign finance and spending on the 2016 primary with ICPR's Director, Sarah Brune.

Sarah Mueller

Tuesday, Jan. 12 marks Bruce Rauner's first anniversary holding the title "Illinois Governor."

Amanda Vinicky interviewing Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / WUIS

Today marks Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's 100th day in office. He sat down in the Capitol for a one-on-one interview with WUIS Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky.

Don Fullerton
WUIS/Illinois Issues

 Don Fullerton, a finance professor at the University of Illinois and a former deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department, served as co-author of a chapter of the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's fifth assessment report, which was released this spring.

John Cullerton
Illinois Senate

  Illinois'  General Assembly is heading into its final stretch.  They've got a lot to resolve before their scheduled adjournment at the end of this month, including what to do about Illinois' income tax rate.  It's scheduled to drop midway through the next fiscal year, but Democrats,  including Senate President John Cullerton, want to make the current, higher rate permanent.  WUIS Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky spoke with Cullerton about it earlier this week, and about why, despite the financial fights ahead, he's proud of the state.