Chicago Downtown Traffic to be Blown Up in “TF3”

{mosimage}And we mean by closing certain streets in downtown Chicago that includes "LaSalle Street (8 p.m. July 9 to 5 a.m. July 12), the Michigan Avenue bridge (8 p.m. July 16 to 5 a.m. July 19) and Upper Wacker Drive (9 p.m. July 18 to 5 a.m. July 22) will have the most impact on traffic" while filming Transformers 3. Chicago Film Office Director Rich Moskal has stated that what director Michael Bay has planned for TF3 could match or exceed what Chris Nolan did for Warner Bros. Batman: The Dark Knight in 2008, namely the tanker scene that leveled the old Brach's Candy factory.

Read the article at the Chicago Tribune and talk about it at our discussion thread.


Filming of ‘Transformers 3' to blow up — downtown traffic

Rich Moskal, director of the Chicago Film Office, talks about plans for closing city streets and landmarks for the filming of “Transformers 3." (Chris Sweda, Chicago Tribune / June 23, 2010)

The “Transformers 3” news conference held Wednesday at the Office of Emergency Management and Communications wasn't meant to stir up interest in the film, which will shoot in Chicago from July 10-Aug. 19, but to prepare the general public.

For what? Jets flying by Willis Tower? Cars plummeting into the Chicago River? Shia LaBeouf's awkward return to the Walgreens on North Michigan Avenue?

Nope. Traffic.

OEMC Executive Director Jose Santiago said the closures on LaSalle Street (8 p.m. July 9 to 5 a.m. July 12), the Michigan Avenue bridge (8 p.m. July 16 to 5 a.m. July 19) and Upper Wacker Drive (9 p.m. July 18 to 5 a.m. July 22) will have the most impact on traffic. He added that most of the movie's filming in Chicago will take place during daylight.

“It's an ambitious production … but we and the producers are committed to mitigating the disruptions and addressing community concerns,” said Chicago Film Office Director Rich Moskal.

What can Chicagoans expect from filming — besides traffic?

Moskal said recently a few “scenes they're planning could match if not exceed the spectacular stuff ‘The Dark Knight' production pulled off.”

Yes, he's talking about the 2008 Batman film that featured an 18-wheeler getting flipped over on LaSalle Street and a massive explosion that leveled the old Brach's Candy building on the West Side.

“Flying debris, flipping cars, stunts, that's the kind of stuff you'll probably be seeing here,” added Moskal.

During a news conference June 16, Mayor Richard Daley announced that the Michael Bay-directed action sequel would contribute $20 million to the local economy and create more than 200 jobs, including 10 internships for Chicago Public Schools students.

The movie has begun filming in Los Angeles and is expected to shoot in Milwaukee in July, Detroit in August and Washington D.C. in mid-September.

Unfortunately for fanboys in Chicago, there will be no glimpse of Optimus Prime or Shockwave, the main villain in the third flick. The robots are computer generated and added after the scene has finished filming.

Still, the cast is heavy on stars, including LaBeouf, Josh Duhamel, Tyrese Gibson and franchise newcomers Frances McDormand and John Malkovich.

LeBeouf's love interest in the first two films, Megan Fox, either was dropped from the third film or quit, depending on who you ask. In her place this time around will be Victoria's Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.

Little is known about the film's plot, but USA Today reports it will involve the Transformers' role in the space race between the U.S. and Russia. Bay, who considered shooting scenes from the original “Transformers” in Chicago before settling on Detroit, told USA Today the storyline will wrap up the trilogy.

Christopher Borrelli contributed to this report.