By Megan Schuller
NBC’s popular television show “Chicago Fire” has filmed near the university in semester’s past, but on Oct. 8 the show filmed a scene inside the Wabash building. The crew and actor Eamonn Walker, who plays Chief Wallace on the show, was on campus all afternoon on Thursday rehearsing and filming on the 14th floor.
Jodi Daily, director of conference and events services, said “Chicago Fire” inquired about a space with a modern office feel and they decided on using the 14th floor recreational room.
“The view and architecture was perfect for what they needed,” said Daily. “There’s financial gain for using our space, but there is exposure there even though it doesn’t say Roosevelt University in the background. They spread the word about filming here and recommend us.”
Daily said that the Wabash building does not only visually attract people, but the school’s positive reputation with filming on campus has created strong partnerships throughout the city.
“Our top priority is to cause as little disruption to students as possible, or activities that are happening,” said Daily. “There is some benefit to just being around that kind of environment whether you have interest in the show, I think it’s great to see it in progress and how many people it takes to make a scene.”
Joseph Molina, junior business management major, watched the scene being filmed and described what he saw.
“It was an office scene where the Chief yells at a big hot shot about something. It looks like they get vocal about something, with a big emphasis on the skyline with the Sears Tower in the shot,” Molina said.
The rec room was completely transformed. Posters were taken off the walls, and cardboard was laid on the ground. Plants, desks and other props were brought in to create the high-rise office feel.
“You could hear the takes being done, and see them rehearsing. The Chief’s extra was present too. It’s surprising to see how many people it takes to film a small scene. The people who take care of the lights, sound and make-up. It’s amazing how much it takes to coordinate all that,” Molina said.
Jason Curry, senior special education major, was in a packed elevator with Walker, who accidentally knocked into him.
“I was in the elevator with Eamonn Walker. They were wrapping up production and bring stuff back down when he bumped into me. He said he was sorry, and I was like ‘oh it’s cool dude,’” said Curry. “They were talking about how good the scene was, so it must be a powerful scene. Hopefully they can film again here.”
Nic Maihs, sophomore musical theatre major, was glad he got the chance to watch the scene being shot.
“As a CCPA student, I thought it was cool to get a glimpse of a film set. The environment of that was interesting. There are not a lot of opportunities to see film sets unless you are studying film,” Maihs said.
The scene will appear in season four, episode eight.