Ogilvy's McLaughlin Eyes Big Screen

Ogilvy's McLaughlin Eyes Big Screen

Ogilvy & Mather's Stirling McLaughlin is hopping from the small screen to the big screen. The award-winning creative director, whose resume includes exceedingly popular spots for M&M's, Miller Lite and cars.com, has targeted this fall to begin shooting his debut feature COLD WAR.

The script was written by McLaughlin's college friend Wilder Konschak and was inspired by a real flu and a real girlfriend (who's now his wife). It's a personal confession about dealing with the worst parts of your favorite person.

"From the very first time I read the script five or six years ago, I just fell in love with the honesty of it," explains McLaughlin. "The whole story deals with those really intimate, awkward exchanges between people when they’re trying to really get to know each other at the beginning of the relationship. Add on top of that a couple of 104 degree fevers and I just thought that was a great story."

In COLD WAR, Maggie, a fiercely independent young woman, has just moved in with her sweet boyfriend, Jon. Before they’ve finished unpacking, they’re both struck with the worst flu in years. Trapped at home, spending every living, breathing, suffering moment together, their week becomes the ultimate test of their relationship: can they weather the cold without resorting to murder?

McLaughlin will team up with Konschak to direct the feature, with Alli Hartley on board as producer. It will star LA actors Madeline Walter (WEEDS, COLLEGEHUMOR ORIGINALS) as Maggie and Rene Gube (GROUND FLOOR, COMMUNITY) as Jon, with additional Chicago casting taking place in the late summer. This will be Wilder and Stirling’s feature debut, and the first feature from their newly formed production company Spaceship Town.

In addition to the feature, McLaughlin is currently wrapping up a short film called POSITIVE VISUALIZATION, which is based on a scene from the COLD WAR feature script. In it, Jon describes his method of self-healing using positive visualization while Maggie imagines what less-than-positive things she’d like to do to get him to shut up. The short was directed by Stirling and Wilder with Stirling serving a DP and Wilder serving as Editor. It was also produced by Hartley with Walter and Gube reprising their respective roles.

Up next: COLD WAR is planning on filming in and around the Chicagoland area in the late autumn and early winter. McLaughlin and Konschak are not presently accepting cast or crew submissions, but anyone interested in working on the film (or if you're just curious and wanna follow the film) should find the film on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/coldwarthemovie, and keep an eye out for future announcements. More info on the feature and the short can be found at coldwarthemovie.com and I'll keep you posted as this one heads into production this fall!

Mike McNamara is the Co-Founder of The Midwest Independent Film Festival, www.midwestfilm.org. Mike pays his rent as an actor in Chicago in theatre, commercials, television and film. More from Mac at www.findmac.com.