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T.J. Chester

T.J. Chester

Author and film producer T.J. Chester is in production on her latest film project in the Region.

Chester, a native of Gary, is currently working on the film "Running with Wolves."

"It's been in the works for the last five years," Chester said, adding she was working on the script during that time. In the last three years, the project has been in pre-production in Atlanta.

"I was born and raised in Gary. I recently moved out to Atlanta because the (film) industry is really growing there," she said.

"Running with Wolves" is based on her three-part book series of the same name.

"The movie is about a young woman who gets evicted from her home and turns to a life of crime...She befriends a couple of other young women and they go on a vicious crime spree," Chester explained.

The filmmaker said the movie started filming last summer but portions of it are still being filmed this month in Gary. Filming may also extend into April.

Among performers appearing in the film are Grover McCants, Bill K. Kenney and Maubra Foster. There are still some characters to cast.

Chester plans to film in various locations in Gary. She said she's happy to be bringing the project to Gary. "Gary has its own style. And I want to give people an opportunity to get (involved)," Chester said.

"I'd like to get people from Gary to participate and help put Gary back on the map. I want to do something good here," she said.

Chester said actors interested in taking part in the project, may contact the casting call website Backstage.com or email a head shot, resume and reels (if applicable) to thenewblackentertainment@gmail.com. They may also contact facebook.com/thenewblackentertainment.

The New Black Entertainment embraces "topics ranging from faith, family and politics while addressing cultural, social and racial issues through film."

Chester said she has ideas for future projects that she'll be working on soon, including a TV series planned for the summer.

The filmmaker's entry into the movie industry actually began through her writing.

"I started out writing. To me, writing is a gift from God," Chester said.

Chester earned her bachelor's degree at Indiana University Northwest in Gary and also studied through Full Sail University, an online school for entertainment and media topics.

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Entertainment Editor/Features Reporter

Eloise is A&E Editor and a food, entertainment and features writer for The Times, subjects she has covered for over two decades in and around the Region. She was the youngest of eight in a Chicago household filled with fantastic cooks and artists.