Most shows filmed in large American cities aren't filmed at famous landmarks. They might be filmed at studios or on green screens with digital backgrounds.
But NBC's Chicago-set dramas are all shot on location in the Windy City. That's a big deal for fans who love seeing their favorite characters speeding down a busy street, addressing a house call in a residential area, or heading to the bar after a long day's work.
Rush University Medical Center
When it comes to making a show feel authentic, there are many factors that go into the mix. A great cast, original script, stellar directing and editing are all things that help the show pull audiences into its world, but sometimes one of the most important factors is the set and location itself.
For Chicago Med, the real-world hospital used on the series is actually Rush University Medical Center. The 210-bed tertiary care hospital in Aurora is home to a number of clinical departments and research centers that are renowned for their outcomes.
As a top-ranked academic medical center, Rush University has been at the forefront of patient care and medical research for generations. It is also a major provider of medical education, training and healthcare services to Chicago and the surrounding areas.
Unlike Chicago Fire and Chicago PD, which are shot on the city’s streets and often feature landmarks that have yet to be filmed, Chicago Med is filmed almost entirely inside. This makes it a surprisingly immersive and connected show.
Cinespace Chicago Film Studios
Cinespace Chicago Film Studios is a studio that offers support services and facilities for film, television, and digital media production. It is located on the west side of Chicago and occupies nearly 2 million square feet.
In recent years, the campus has been home to NBC's "Chicago Fire," "Chicago Med" and "Chicago PD." It also houses DePaul University's School of Cinematic Arts program.
The North Lawndale campus has a number of soundproof stages of various sizes, as well as production offices. It is an integral part of the city's growing film industry and has helped bring more than 15,000 jobs to Chicago's West Side.
In June, TPG Real Estate Partners purchased the Chicago and Toronto campuses of indie studio operator Cinespace, home to Dick Wolf's "Chicago Fire," Netflix's "Umbrella Academy" and MGM's "The Handmaid's Tale." Eoin Egan will join the company as co-managing partner and CFO.
If you’re looking for a peaceful, serene place to escape the bustle of the city, Graceland Cemetery is the spot. It’s one of three Victorian garden cemeteries in Chicago, along with Oak Woods and Rosehill, and was established in 1860 by Thomas Bryan.
The cemetery’s park-like ambiance is thanks to its design by 19th-century landscape architects Cleveland, William Le Baron Jenney and Ossian Simonds. They used ponds and native plants to create a pastoral atmosphere, with the cemetery modeled after Victorian parks.
For those who love history, there are plenty of fascinating people buried at Graceland. Some of them include George Pullman, who built the train that gave the Far South Side neighborhood its name; Joseph Medill, once Chicago’s mayor and Chicago Tribune owner; and Daniel Burnham, who planned the World’s Columbian Exposition.
Other highlights of the cemetery include the Eternal Silence statue by Lorado Taft for the Graves family plot and The Crusader that marks Victor Lawson’s grave. The cemetery has a lake and footbridge, as well as an island that is said to house the remains of Daniel Burnham.
Maxwell Street Police Station
Maxwell Street is not only a popular shopping street, but it's also the home to several historic buildings. One of them is the Maxwell Street Police Station, located at 943 W. Maxwell Street.
It's the oldest surviving police station in Chicago, and it's known in popular culture because it was used as the building's exterior image in "Hill Street Blues," which ran on NBC from 1981 to 1987. Other interior shots were filmed here as well.
The building is also a training school for police officers. Previously, it served as an elementary school and later as a training academy for the Chicago Police Department.
The neighborhood has a long history of crime. Unlike London, however, it is not all evil. It is, on the other hand, a neighborhood with a large proportion of laggards and physically or mentally handicapped people.
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