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Marriott Content Studio

(Above) Actor Grant Bowler, who stars as Joshua Nolan in the Syfy television series Defiance, appears in a scene for a short comedy film produced by Marriott Content Studio. In the background of the scene, shot at 55 West Wacker, is Wacker Drive and the Dearborn Street Bridge, along with buildings along the Chicago River. (Click on image to view larger version.)

Marriott is making movies, third film was shot in Chicago

24-Oct-15 – Marriott International says its new 12-minute comedy short, shot at locations along the Chicago River, will defy conventions of business travel and reach a new generation of travelers.

Business Unusual is the third film produced by Marriott Content Studio, launched a year ago to produce digital content to attract younger travelers. While the films feature Marriott hotels, Marriott is hoping they will be seen more as stories and less as advertising.

Filming took place on October 9 and October 10 at Marriott-branded Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel and at The Gettys Group, a firm that does interior design for hotels, located on the fourth floor of 55 West Wacker. The film will be released early next year on the web and in some movie theaters.

The film’s stars include actors Jason Gerhardt, Grant Bowler, and Tia Carrere, and the dance troupe Substance Over Hype. Former Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen makes a cameo.

The film is about two business travelers in Chicago for a sales pitch. One of the travelers is staying at the Renaissance, an experience that inspires him to create a campaign that lands the account.

David Beebe “Brands must stop interrupting what consumers are interested in and become what they are interested in,” says David Beebe (left), Marriott’s Vice President in charge of Global Creative and Content Marketing. “Short films driven by storytelling versus advertising are just one of the many ways we are engaging with next generation travelers.”

Beebe says the films are the right mix of art and commerce “to win the hearts, minds, and wallets” of travelers around the world and to inspire more people to travel.

On March 10, Marriott released its second film, an action-comedy about two bellmen who prove their company loyalty when their Marriott hotel comes under siege by art thieves.

 Watch: Two Bellmen Official Movie