The Making of "Shit Chicagoans Say"


One day I was enjoying a few "Shit People Say" videos when I came across "Shit New Yorkers Say". I loved it and thought it was hilarious even though I'm not from New York. I immediately wondered if Chicago had one so I searched for "Shit Chicagoans Say" and got zero returned results. Right then I knew something had to be done because there were too many phrases already running through my head.

That night I was hanging out with a few improv friends and we all sat around coming up with things we hear all the time. By the end of the night I had 5 or 6 pages of great material and ideas. The very next day we started shooting at a couple different locations. The filming was pretty simple and basically involved someone saying the same line 4 or 5 times so I could pick the best line in editing. We would slightly change the lines every time we said them and improvise different versions. It became apparent that our improvised lines were a lot funnier than the original ideas. Lines like "This beer is good, but it's no Michael Jordan" came from several shots of me saying "Lebron James is good, but he's no Michael Jordan". The same thing happened when we started listing off 4am bars. Half of the bars in that list are just made up names that we thought were funny.

I posted a link to the video on Facebook and Reddit at around 7:oopm and by midnight the video went viral. I think we had over 100,000 views within the first couple hours of posting it. It was really exciting to make something like this and have it become so popular.

A very small group of people didn't like the video because everyone who performed in it wasn't born in Chicago. To them I typically say, "Who cares". Shit Girls Say, the video that started all the other videos, is performed by a guy. All these videos are based on observation and you don't have to live somewhere your whole life to make observations on that place. You can call us "transplants", but that doesn't change the fact that we are Chicagoans and can observe the Chicago way of life.

Chicago is a large and diverse city and it would have been impossible to sum up everything in a 2 minute and 30 second humorous video. It's for entertainment purposes only and most of the lines are just for laughs so I was suprised to see that some people were actually angry. Overall I just think people were upset that their specific demographic wasn't represented. To them I say, make you're own video or find something else to get offended about.

We jumped on the "Shit People Say" meme a lot later than we could/should have, but I'm still very happy with it. A lot of people come up to me on the street and say they enjoyed it. I've been making videos for a long time and to have something blow up like that was an awesome experience. We had a ton of fun making it, which is pretty evident in the OUTTAKES. I will definitely jump on the next YouTube meme I can.

Technical aspects of the video: The video was shot with a Canon 5d Mark ii, Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 l series lens, a Rode shotgun mic, and Sony wireless mics. The editing was done with Final Cut Pro X on a Mac Pro.

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  • AWESOME work! Love it.

  • this one should be renamed " Shit people who live north of Lincoln Park say."

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