Chicago Production “Mercury In Retrograde” To Receive Local Premiere At 4th Annual Oakton Pop-Up Film Festival


Award-winning filmmaker and author Michael Glover Smith directs a locally-made relationship drama about how men and women communicate (and miscommunicate) in the modern world.

Chicago, IL (October 9, 2017) – Retrograde Films, LLC today announces the Chicago-area premiere of MERCURY IN RETROGRADE, a locally made relationship drama, at the 4th annual Oakton Pop-Up Film Festival in Des Plaines on November 30, 2017, at 2:00 pm.

Directed by Chicagoan Michael Glover Smith (writer/director of Cool Apocalypse and author of Flickering Empire), MERCURY IN RETROGRADE is set in Chicago and southwest Michigan and stars acclaimed, internationally known film actors Roxane Mesquida (Fat Girl, Malgre la Nuit), Najarra Townsend (Contracted, Me and You and Everyone We Know) and Andrew Sensenig (Upstream Color, We are Still Here) alongside some of Chicago’s best acting talent: Alana Arenas (Steppenwolf Ensemble Member), Jack C. Newell (Open Tables) and Shane Simmons (Party Time Party Time). The film was produced by Simmons (producer of Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party) and Kevin W. Wright (for Pickle & Wink). It was shot by Henry Gamble’s Jason Chiu and edited by noted writer/director Frank V. Ross (Audrey the Trainwreck).

The plot concerns three couples from Chicago vacationing together for a weekend at a lakeside cabin in Michigan: Isabelle (Mesquida) and Richard (Kevin Wehby) have been dating for five years but do not cohabitate and are deeply unhappy; Jack (Newell) and Golda (Arenas) have been happily married for a decade and are trying to conceive a child; and Peggy (Townsend) and Wyatt (Simmons) are a newly formed couple who don’t yet know each other well and whose future together is uncertain. Over the course of three days, hidden tensions and secrets slowly come to the surface.

MERCURY IN RETROGRADE had its World Premiere at the Full Bloom Film Festival in Statesville, N.C., on September 16, 2017, where it won the award for Best Narrative Feature. Matt Fagerholm called the film “remarkable” in a profile for

Najarra Townsend, Alana Arenas, Jack C. Newell, Shane Simmons, Kevin Wehby and Michael Glover Smith will be present for a Q&A following the Oakton Pop-Up screening.

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