John Hughes Tour In The Works?
Publication Date: 17 February 2000

NORTHBROOK, Ill. (Wireless Flash) -- Tomorrow (Feb. 18) marks the 50th birthday of "Breakfast Club" director John Hughes -- but it seems folks in his hometown of Northbrook, Illinois, could care less.

About the only recognition coming from Northbrook is a web site created by a 20-year-old film student who used to live in the town.

Northbrook native Alexander Rubinow says if the town officials were smart, they'd turn Northbrook into a tourist attraction for Gen X'ers.

The self-appointed "Hughes-torian" is considering selling a map of popular Northbrook-area sights which include the "Save Ferris" water tower featured in "Ferris Bueller," the high school used in "The Breakfast Club" and the home where Macauley Culkin was left "Home Alone."

Rubinow claims film fans from as far away as Australia have planned vacations to see the Hughes movie locations, but Northbrook officials claim the films haven't affected tourism at all.

“Live Moves Pretty Fast,” John Hughes and the North Shore
Publication Date: 10 August 2009
Source: Ageless North Shore -

Several years ago, on a walk around the neighborhood, my son-in-law stopped to take a photo of a house (now for sale) at 379 Beech Street in Highland Park. It is best known as Cameron Frye’s house from the John Hughes film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. We walked there last Saturday. Somehow I expected to see teddy bears or posters or offerings to the memory of John Hughes.

Instead it was a slightly overcast, humid day; the streets were quiet. The memories stayed in the movie and in our minds.

Early on in
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off a very young looking Matthew Broderick has a monologue in the shower. It provides the key to his perception of the teenage experience. Not only does “life move pretty fast,” but much of what we are taught (in his case, European history) does not relate to real life. In the case of Ferris, the study of “isms” does not help out the fact that he doesn’t have a car.

The death of John Hughes at the age of 59 as he walked in Manhattan is a reminder that life can also leave you pretty fast.

In his classic teenage angst films of the 1980s
Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, and Ferris, John Hughes explored the longings, emotions, fears and delirious newness of interacting with the world. As we get older nothing really changes except the newness. Since we don’t have “newness” as an excuse, we compensate with wisdom.

The death of John Hughes is particularly poignant for those of us from the North Shore because Hughes featured our suburbs as back lots and as characters in his films. I found a particularly interesting site created in 1998 (and updated since then) by Alexander Rubinow, then an aspiring film maker and now a video and film editor at an LA production company.  Alexander and his friends photographed local locations of John Hughes films. Click on this for a charming tribute to John Hughes

Northbrook film maker inspired by Hughes example
Publication Date: 12 August 2009
Source: The Northbrook Star -

By TODD SHIELDS tshields@pioneerlocal.com

Among the fans of recently deceased director John Hughes is a fellow former Northbrook resident who has followed in his footsteps -- literally.

While a student at Glenbrook North High School in Northbrook, Alexander Rubinow wrote and produced three videos showing various Chicago's North Shore locations where Hughes shot his well-known movies, such as Home Alone, Ferris Buehler's Day Off and The Breakfast Club. Rubinow later finished the trilogy at the University of Iowa as a film student.

Titled John Hughes Retrospective, the three-minute shorts were shown on Glenbrook North's cable channel. They can be viewed at
www.arubinow.com. Rubinow, currently a television editor for a company that produces Lifetime, The History Channel, and The Discovery Channel, appears on his videos.

"I talk about each of the scenes' locations and bring to light little bits of information. When I learned where (Hughes) had graduated, it really sparked my interest and kicked off the whole project," said Rubinow. Rubinow currently lives in Los Angeles and said he returns to the Chicago area about 10 times a year. His parents live in Highland Park.

Both men graduated from GBN, albeit a generation apart -- Hughes in 1968 and Rubinow 29 years later in 1997. Hughes died of a heart attack Aug. 6 in New York City.

"His death was a big shock to me. I wish I had met him or worked with John, but he became kind of reclusive," he said. "He was being overexposed and around 1991 started to write under the pen name of Edmond Dante, the lead character in 'The Count of Monte Christo.'"

Rubinow also attended School District 28's Meadowbrook Elementary School in Northbrook and Northbrook Junior High School.

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