black and white photography braden cruthers

Chicago International Film Festival Reveals 50th Anniversary Poster by Famed Photographer Victor Skrebneski

Saturday, September 13, 2014 Cora

The Chicago International Film Festival unveiled its 50th Anniversary poster on Wednesday at Expo 72. The poster was done by world-renowned photographer Victor Skrebneski. The Chicago photographer attended the unveiling and signed posters for guests.

Festival Founder and Artistic Director Michael Kutza and managing director Vivian Teng thanked Skrebneski and said a few words about the festival before the unveiling. “Victor has been a friend and supporter of the Festival from the very beginning,” said Kutza. “Since that day, back in 1965, when I asked him to spice things up for our Festival poster, he has delivered some of the most iconic and memorable images the city has seen.”

The poster titled “The Next Generation” is a reimagining of Skrebneski’s 1965 T-Shirt poster that shook up the Windy City. While Victor usually photographs adults, the poster features young Braden Cruthers and Noah Warren in the film festivals iconic t-shirt. There was no cattle call audition for the children. “He knew what he wanted,” said agent Jenny Hall of Stewart Talent, who represents Cruthers and Warren. “He knew what type of boy and what type of girl.”

Victor Skrebneski with Noah Warren and Braden Cruthers The unveiling was the first time the kids saw the poster. When the red curtain drew back, their faces lit up. They sparkled in front of it as photographers swooped in for shoots. “It was Michael ’s idea,” Skrebneski said, notorious for not discussing his photographs or the way he works. It may have been Kutza’s idea, but it was Skrebneski’s magic that made the black and white print pop with youthful promise and optimism, the child-like wonder with which many of us approach movies.

Micheal Kutza, Noah Warren, and Braden Cruthers Expo 72, in partnership with the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and Dark Horse Wine, also hosts a special gallery exhibition, “Because Everybody Loves Movies.” You enter under the iconic film festival logo of smoldering silent film stars’ eyes into a room and you’re surrounded by four foot square photographs by Skrebneski. The dramatic but honest pictures of film icons like Liv Ullman, Bette Davis, and Dennis Hopper are grand and stunning. His portrait of Orson Welles truly is worth a thousand words as it encapsulates all that the legend is: who he was, his presence, and the ideas he conveyed. The exhibit runs until October 30th. The 50th Chicago International Film Festival runs October 9-23, 2014.

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