Profiles Theatre Brings the Curtain Down Permanently

~ by Ty Pi and Legendary Lew

Closed

Yesterday morning, we had published an article focusing on a group of activists in the Chicago theatre community taking action against Profiles Theatre, where decades of abuse had allegedly taken place. Later in the evening, the Chicago Tribune reported that Profiles is closing down, effective immediately.

Don’t underestimate the importance of this development. The closure–a result of pressure exerted through social media and direct action–has the beginnings of a movement.

As of today, Bill Cosby’s criminal case is ongoing. Abuse in Hollywood is ongoing. Abuse in the music industry is ongoing. God forbid, there are other theatre houses engaging in abuse and sexual assault in Chicago or anywhere else.

The Chicago theatre community, along with organizations such as Not In Our House, said to Profiles, “enough is enough.” The activists featured in the video below show that anyone can make an effective peaceful demonstration with a strong message. Profiles had to either drop Darrell W. Cox and Joe Jahraus or shut its doors.

And so, Profiles has decided to shut its doors. We support this decision.

However, the struggle does not end there. The fight for positive changes in the entertainment world continues. Physical abuse, sexual abuse and exploitation have no place in creating art that examines the human condition.

Art Activists Fight to End the Abuses at Profiles Theatre

~ by Ty Pi

13417694_10104404286496413_961591556992214150_n

Profiles Theatre Windows of Shame (Photo taken by an anonymous tenant.)

On Thursday, June 9th, 2016, an explosive and lengthy article was released in The Chicago Reader. Written by Aimee Levitt and Christopher Piatt, the report details the abuses taking place at the famed Profiles Theatre. The alleged abuser is actor/artistic director Darrell W. Cox, with co-founder/artistic director Joe Jahraus allegedly complicit to these abuses.

The story has since been picked up by Jezebel, Playbill, The New York Times, and The Chicago Sun-Times.

The day the story went into print, a group of art activists, led by Emma Couling and Gaby Labotka, took action in front of Profiles Theatre, handing out copies of the damning article. Later that stormy night, Legendary Lew and I got to witness them put up multiple Chicago Reader front page covers and the full article on the windows of Profiles Theatre.

13407033_10101565986118547_3973354806760835049_n

Art activists in front of Profiles Theatre. “Whatever the Truth Requires” is the Profiles’ mission statement. (Photo taken by a supporter.)

In the video featured below, you’ll hear Couling, Labotka, and Anna Rose li-Epstein state why they were demonstrating.

You can also visit the activist site, Not In Our House, where their mission statement reads, “Join us as we lead a cultural shift to strengthen our collective experience by working together to protect and develop our artists, our theatres, and our Chicago Theatre Community.” The activists featured in the video are not affiliated with Not In Our House, but are acting independently.

 

 

The Profiles Theatre’s Latest Show Ends Before It Begins

At the same time that allegations of physical and sexual abuse against its actors went public, Profiles Theatre had this ad for its next--now cancelled--production

At the same time that allegations of physical and sexual abuse against its actors went public, Profiles Theatre had this ad for its next–now cancelled–production

by Legendary Lew

The Chicago Reader recently published a blazing expose of Profiles Theatre and the decades of abuse suffered by some of its actors and actresses. If you’ve yet to read it, please do so. It’s an exhaustive piece by Aimee Levitt.

Well, after nothing happened for decades to stop the alleged abuses by manager Darrell Cox and complicity by company co-founder Joe Jahraus, the clouds burst.

The massive article has been picked up by Jezebel, Playbill and has gained the attention of The Jeff Awards Committee, which stated it will review its award given to Cox for an acting performance he gave during a period of alleged abuse.

Now the latest bad news for the theater: their newest production, The Village Bike has been shut down by its playwright Penelope Skinner, who rescinded the rights to the work due to the expressed allegations.

Much more is going on while this news article catches on like wildfire. Artsintegrity.org has more in this post of updates.

Next week, we’ll have some footage of some of the brave folks who dared thunderstorms to take a late-night action against the theater. Stay tuned!

Film Franchises Could Ruin Hollywood Movies

FoodInc

Courtesy: AP News. From the documentary “Food, Inc.”, a food processing production line. Are Hollywood films becoming no different?

by Legendary Lew

Friend of The Underground Multiplex and contributor to Mediatrocities, Dominick Suzanne-Mayer comes up with an astute write-up of Warner Brothers’ decision to produce more DC Comics-based movies. His views parallel mine in discussion of what I’ve termed Imitation Movie Products.

You should head over to Consequence of Sound and give it a read. It’s yet another movie lover’s concern for how movies are being made and distributed to the detriment of those who can never have their films projected on the big screen.

Saturday Night Funnies

by Legendary Lew

It’s time to put this meme I created up here, since it seems to be getting some attention on Facebook. This was created in response to the news that Bernie Sanders will be speaking to an audience at The Vatican next week.

hillaryphonepope

US Copyright Office Wants to Hear from You About DMCA Abuses (But You Have to Contact Them TODAY)

DMCA-abuseby Legendary Lew

I recently posted here about the non-enforcement of The Fair Use clause for media producers and how their works (and careers) in were jeopardy. Overzealous entertainment labels and outright thieves plop down DMCA takedown notices on YouTube when the alleged violations were highly questionable. Making matters worse, the claimants could legally take ad money meant for the original video creator after the takedown and never be required to give it back, even if the claims are proven false.

Now I’ve learned from Fight for the Future(.org) that the U.S. Copyright Office wants to hear from those who have a concern with these violations.  Click on this link to register your concerns about the misuse of DMCA takedowns and the violation of free speech these actions incur.

The only catch is that you must contact them by 11:59pm tonight!

So contact them now and tell others. We can flood the US Copyright Office the same way the FCC was flooded regarding a free and open internet.

UPDATE: There’s already a report that the massive response is crashing the government servers on their site. Keep trying! This is very positive!

Here’s the Nostalgia Critic speaking about the abuse of DMCA takedowns:

Mediatrocities Podcast #22: Ben Hicks of Fandependent Films and the State of Indie Films Today

fandependentby Legendary Lew

Ben Hicks, co-founder of Fandependent Films, joins me in the latest podcast to talk about his site, the state of independent films and whether it’s possible to have cottage industries of film.

Check out Fandependent Films, where you can watch a brand new movie every day and become a fan of your favorite ones. Becoming a fan supports the site and the filmmakers.

Listen to the podcast:

BenHicks

Ben Hicks (l) of Fandenpendent Films with Legendary Lew