It seems like just yesterday that we were reporting on Jussie Smollett’s alleged attack in Chicago. Actually, it was 300 or so days ago. The Empire celebrity was one of the many stories Reel 360 and our sister publication Reel Chicago covered in 2019. And there was much to cover.
Reel 360 expanded from mainly reporting Chicago and Los Angeles news to New York, Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis, Portland and a slew of other cities.
If there was a story and it was interesting, we did our best to cover it. Chicago made a lot of news this year, from musical chairs among ad agency creative directors to Steve Easterbrook being fired from his CEO position at McDonald’s. There were also the chicken wars between Popeyes and Chick-Fil-A.
Sarah Sanders left the White House and Keanu Reeves returned to Bill and Ted. Game of Thrones ended and Disney+ launched.
There was lots of Disney news. Lots of McDonald’s news. Then more Disney news. Then more McDonald’s news.
And Reel 360 went to the Oscars. Here is a smattering of the some of the bigger stories we covered in 2019.
20. Empire star Jussie Smollett beaten by MAGA supporters
19. Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report
18. Marketing Arm takes lead on State Farm from DDB
17. Journalists condemn ‘Trump Kills Media’ video
In October, a violent video, created by a pro-Trump group, went viral. It depicted Trump stabbing, shooting and impaling the media, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Mitt Romney. (Read Story)
16. Fool House star Loughlin pleads not guilty in college scam
Star of Full House and the 90210 reboot, Lori Loughlin, got caught (along with Felicity Huffman and others) paying large sums of a money to a fake charity in order to get her two daughters accepted into the USC. She and her husband have plead innocent. (Read Story)
15. Netflix asks Bird Box fans to please stop challenge
14. Jenny Lumpkin leaves Quriosity for The Mill
13. Amoaku named Chicago Film Office Director
In July, 25-year film industry vet Kwame Amoaku became the first African-American appointed to the vital and visible leadership role of Director of the Chicago Film Office. (Read Story)
12. Immesoete files $800K ageism suit against Epsilon
11. Disney, Sony web up deal for one more Spider-Man
In September, after a very public dispute during the summer, which scared the webbing out of Marvel and Spidey fans, Disney and Sony came to an agreement to produce more webslinger films together. (Read Story)
10. McDonald’s taps Wieden+Kennedy NY as lead agency
9. 7,000 WGA members fire their agents
In April, the ATA, who refused to back off of their packaging deals, got a rude wake-up call from the WGA. They were fired. In an amazing show of solidarity, 7,000 termination letters were issued. (Read Story)
8. The ‘Chicken Sandwich Wars’ will leave you fried
When Popeyes introduced their chicken sandwich, a Twitter war began between the chain and reigning fowl champ, Chick-Fil-A. It was in the vein of great fights like “The Thrilla in Manilla,” “The Hatfields and The McCoys” and “Trump vs Anyone else.” We were in the midst of the “Great Chicken Sandwich Wars.” (Read Story)
7. Erica Duffy is MIFF’s new executive director
6. Joker has last laugh as it is highest grossing “R” film
In October, Warner Bros. and director Todd Phillips laughed all the way to the bank as Joker passed the $800 million mark, making it the highest grossing R-rated film of all time worldwide. (Read Story)
5. Robert De Niro bringing 600,000 sq. ft. studio to NYC
4. Emma Montgomery leaves Leo Burnett post
December was a big month for moves. Musical executive chairs continued in Chicago as Leo Burnett president and chief strategy officer Emma Montgomery resigned her post. (Read Story)
3. Wonder Woman 84 trailer drops and it’s wonderful
2. Disney+ gets a minus w/streamers for error message
1. McDonald’s Easterbrook fired over employee relationship
There were plenty more stories. How could there not be? We published almost every day of the year during 2019. We will continue to do so in 2020, bring you more news, events and weirdness from the worlds of advertising, film, TV, music, social, tech and gaming. Have the happiest of New Years from The Reel 360 team.
Contact Colin Costello at [email protected]