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October 16, 2013
Posted by: Can

Joining the slew of television shows and movies filming in Chicago is Crisis, a political drama starring Gillian Anderson and Dermot Mulroney set to air on NBC in February.

While shooting this fall, many of the cast members are calling Chicago home base for a few months, including James Lafferty of One Tree Hill fame. We talked to Lafferty about his Chicago musts and being behind the camera.

You’ve acted, directed, and produced. Which do you enjoy the most?
JAMES LAFFERTY: It’s hard to say which I like the most, but I know which one I like the least: producing. I’m not wired to be a producer. If you’re acting or directing, you can immerse yourself in the material; as a producer, you have to be aware of so many external influences, and I’m not the best at balancing those with the creative aspects of production.

Where are you originally from, and where are you staying locally?
JL: I’m originally from Hemet, California, which is about two hours outside of Los Angeles. I’m staying in the Lakeshore East area for the time being.

What do you like about Chicago, and how is it different from LA?
JL: So far, I like how accessible the city is. The public transportation is better and cabs are cheaper than in Los Angeles, which is nice. People are friendlier here [in comparison to] any other major city I’ve visited.

What memorable sites or restaurants have you visited?
JL: I had a pretty great sushi dinner at Sunda (110 W. Illinois St., 312-644-0500) one of the first nights I was here. The Art Institute (111 S. Michigan Ave., 312-443-3600) and Millennium Park (201 E. Randolph St., 312-742-1168) really blew me away the first time I had a chance to explore the area. I try to spend as much time as I can around there. I also went and saw a castmate’s play, The Crownless King at the Chopin Theatre (1542 W. Division St., 773-278-1500), which is an awesome establishment. I’ll definitely be going back there to see more plays. It’s a unique atmosphere. I’ve also gotten to see a Cubs game and a Bears game since I’ve been here, both of which were a blast—which goes without saying.

What have you not yet gotten the chance to do or see that you’d like to do or see before leaving?
JL: A Bulls game and a Blackhawks game are a must for me. I won’t leave the city before getting the chance to take a picture in front of the [Michael] Jordan statue [outside the United Center]. Also, I would like to explore Wicker Park more. It seems like the nightlife there has a lot to offer.

Source: Elle Eichinger @ Michigan Avenue Magazine

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