Television Festival

54th Chicago International Television Festival

54th Chicago International Television Festival

The Chicago International Television Festival is a three-day festival celebrating the art of television productions and commercials from all around the world. Featuring premiere screenings, panel discussions, and an awards-night ceremony for the best commercials of the year, the Festival honors the creativity and craft of Television’s brightest minds. Learn more about the Chicago International Television Festival…

Click here to see the full winners list


Thank you for joining us at the 2018 Chicago International Television Festival. We’ll see you next year!

Tuesday, March 20


Woke TV stills


With the launch of Showtime’s The Chi and HBO’s upcoming Brown Girls, Chicago is emerging as a hotbed of new, exciting and racially diverse content. This collection of new Chicago-based web series shows an eclectic and fun array of stories about LGBTQ individuals, women, and people of color: Bea Cordelia and Daniel Kyri’s heartfelt The T and Zach Payne’s endearing Kissing Walls both examine love and relationships in the LGBTQ community, Wendy Jo Carlton’s Easy Abby follows the comic exploits of a Chicago lesbian, Velvet tells the story of two very different black women in an all black office, and Addison Heimann’s Kappa Force is the rollicking story of five diverse superhero sorority ladies investigating the murder of their youngest member. (54 minutes)

Series Trailers: The T | Kissing Walls | Easy Abby | Velvet | Kappa Force

Post-screening Q&A featuring Hannah Welever(Kappa Force), Zak Payne (Kissing Walls), Bea Cordelia (The T) and BrittneyLove Smith (Velvet), hosted by OpenTV’s Aymar Jean Christian

8:00PM – Premiere: ROSEANNE (ABC)

Roseanne 2 still


Roseanne, the timeless sitcom that broke new ground and dominated ratings in its original run, returns with this special hour-long premiere. Featuring the complete original cast (Roseanne Barr, John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Lecy Goranson, Sara Gilbert, Michael Fishman, Emma Kenney, Ames McNamara and Jayden Rey), the revival will explore life, death and everything in between through the relatable, hilarious and brutally honest lens of the Conner household. With the inimitable Roseanne at its epicenter, fresh stories that tackle today’s issues and even more laughs from a brilliant cast and crew that haven’t missed a beat, audiences old and new will celebrate the homecoming of America’s favorite working-class family. (60 minutes)

Series Trailer: Roseanne

Post-screening Q&A featuring Lecy Goranson (actress) and Bruce Helford (executive producer), mderated by Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Johnson

Wednesday, March 21

6:00PM – Premiere: YOUR HONOR

Your Honor still


Dark, gripping and morally complex, the award-winning new Israeli TV series Your Honor tells the story of a high-powered judge (Yoram Hattab, Nina’s Tragedies, Kadosh), that is forced to make tough decisions in order to protect his son, who is involved in a hit-and-run accident in which a man is killed. When the identity of the victim is revealed, it sends the judge and his family reeling. This powerful drama from the writer of popular Israeli TV shows Arab Labor and A Touch Away shows even the most honorable men will bend in the face of danger. Your Honor was picked up for a U.S. remake on Showtime from the creators of Criminal Justice and The Good Wife. (2 episodes, 52 mins)

Series Trailer: Your Honor

8:00PM – Premiere: THE VANISHING

The Vanishing still


Starring German star Julia Jentsch (24 Weeks, Sophie Scholl: The Final Days) and directed by Hans-Christian Schmid (2006 Chicago International Film Festival winner, Requiem), The Vanishing follows Michelle, a resolute single mother on a mission to find her missing daughter, who disappeared one night in their small town along the German-Czech border. Uncovering a web of secrets and lies, kept under a tight lid by the whole community, Michelle is increasingly horrified by what she finds out about her daughter–and herself. Called “nothing short of a sensation” and “a tremendous achievement” by one of Germany’s largest newspapers (Sueddeutsche Zeitung), The Vanishing also won awards for best script and best actress at the recent German Television Awards. (44 minutes)

Series Trailer: The Vanishing (In German)

Thursday, March 22

$15 tickets provides admission to both Thursday screenings

6:00PM – New episode: CHICAGO FIRE (Dick Wolf Production)

Chicago Fire still


From renowned Emmy Award-winning executive producer Dick Wolf (Law & Order) and co-creator Derek Haas (3:10 to Yuma) comes the high-octane drama Chicago Fire, an edge-of-your-seat view into the lives of everyday heroes committed to one of America’s noblest professions. The firefighters, rescue squad, and paramedics of Chicago Firehouse 51 risk their lives week in and week out to save and protect the citizens of their incredible city. In tonight’s new episode, “Looking For a Lifeline,” Casey (Jesse Spencer) and Dawson (Monica Raymund) respond to a car accident, but become skeptical when a domineering husband continues to answer for his injured wife, while Kidd (Miranda Rae Mayo) uncovers something meaningful and important to Severide (Taylor Kinney), and Brett (Kara Killmer) discovers some potentially unsettling news. Joe Minoso, David Eigenberg, Christian Stolte also co-star, along with guest stars Nick Gehlfuss, Yaya DaCosta, Jon Seda, Marina Squerciati and Gary Cole.

Series Trailer: Chicago Fire

Post-screening Q&A featuring creator/showrunner Derek Haas and select cast, moderated by NBC5’s Leeann Trotter


TV Festival logo

6:30PM – Commercials Reception
Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at Wine Room at Lucky Strike (322 E. Illinois St. 2nd floor)

8:00PM – Competition Screening

Tickets for both screenings and the reception are $50 tickets

An evening of celebrating the art of the television commercial as we announce the winners from this year’s Commercial Competition. Nominees across a wide variety of categories will be shown on the big screen as we honor the artistry and craftsmanship poured into commercials from all over the world. Come and see some of the top spots from around the globe as we award the very best commercials of the year.