Chicago August 20th 2011
The day before the open casting call, Holland and Kerry from the Biggest Loser Casting, filmed a video giving advice and suggestions needed before attending. As you can see in the photos, it was a very small venue so Kerry explained the parking situation. Essentially, you were not to park in the lot where 'Chicago Home Fitness' was (the location of the open casting call). Well, you could, but the problem was the two hour parking limit and the likelihood of being in line and with the casting crew for more than two hours. Street parking was available, but most had two hour limits also (as I discovered). The best bet was to get dropped off, or find a freebie spot and walk a few blocks. And hey, why not start off your Biggest Loser experience with a bit of a walk?
Once the parking situation was assessed, the next thought was how the line would form. A long line was likely, resulting in business entrances being potentially blocked. The direction of the line would wrap around the strip mall and into the alley. Caution was also given to the 'potty situation'. There was no bathrooms available inside the Chicago Home Fitness because of how small it was. The recommended strategy was to find a local business willing to allow use of it's facilities. Last word I heard, businesses were not pleased with the prospect. Perhaps they were not counting on the Biggest Loser hopefuls willing to make purchases in the stores after making use of the toilets? Who's to know. Holland gave the suggestion of perhaps getting something to eat at a local restaurant, then taking care of any nature calls.
With the information now digested, the Biggest Loser casting call for season 13 could begin. Who knows, maybe the next winner of the Biggest Loser will come from the Chicago area.
The morning began with a terrible storm and a torrential downpour of rain. Driving in, there were warnings of flash flooding and certain streets were closed. But soon the rain abated and the casting call was fully underway. As you can see, the line forming outside the Chicago Home Fitness never cleared despite the rains heaviest pounding. From there on, the sun was out and the rest of the day was absolutely beautiful. So beautiful in fact, a local merchant began grilling fish and giving away free samples.
As the day went on, the line did get shorter. This was the line around 2:00pm, the halfway mark for the time allotted for the casting call. Unfortunately, because the area was so crammed I was unable to get many photo ops except from the outside, such as this shot. Initially I thought the casting call would be in an area with more room. Maybe next time I'll get a special invite to do my reporting from inside the action? We can only hope.
So, were you at the Chicago casting call? How did it go for you? We'd love to read about your experience. Or if you were at another cities casting location how did it go? Was it as small as this location? Share your thoughts below.