Sneed: Lucas museum struggle is its own drama
Subscribe for unlimited digital access.
Try one month for $1!
Subscribe for unlimited digital access. Try one month for $1!
No worries, Wookiee?
No betcha, Chewbacca!
The dramatic tug of war over the lakeside fate of the proposed Lucas Museum project housing movie mogul George Lucas’ legacy . . . has all the makings of a Hollywood drama.
• The storyline: The first museum in America built by an African-American woman.
• The players: “Star Wars” legend George Lucas; his Chicago-bred, financial guru wife, Mellody Hobson; Mayor Rahm Emanuel; and a combative “Friends of the Park” group — which is fighting a new museum on the lake.
Only this is serious. And it’s real.
“This looked like it was a work still in progress, when something happened to unhinge the process last week,” said the Rev. Michael Pfleger, who is a close Hobson friend.
“It’s a stunner. It seemed like things were back on track,” he said.
Sneed is told a hush hush meeting last Wednesday at the offices of Ariel Investments between Hobson (who had just help engineer the DreamWorks Animation/Comcast deal) — and Friends of the Park opponent Juanita Irizarry seemed “friendly and conciliatory,” according to a Sneed source.
“The [Friends of the Park] told them to hold on and stay the case, but then something happened/broke loose after their board meeting the next day,” the source said.
“This is crazy,” said Pfleger, who heads the largest African-American South Side Catholic parish. “Mellody loves Chicago. It’s her home. It’s where she was raised and educated and is always giving back. She has been fighting tooth and nail for this. This museum could have gone to Los Angeles and other cities. It was a huge, wonderful gift for Chicago and its children.
“This would have been the first museum in America built by a black woman,” he said. “Imagine what that would do to the empowerment of young black girls.”
Sneed also hears Hobson asked to address the “Friends of the Park” board meeting, but was told it wasn’t necessary.
“What is going on?” Pfleger added.
Running with Rauner . . .
Sneed hears rumbles Gov. Bruce Rauner may not be attending the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, this summer.
“That’s what I hear,” a top GOPer said.
In early March, Donald Trump — who now seems to be en route to the Republican presidential nomination — didn’t even know Rauner.
“Rauner? Who? Don’t know him,” Trump told Sneed.
“Why? What’s up,” Trump asked.
“The state of Illinois is in a budget nightmare,” I said. “Broke.”
“Well, don’t know him.”
Hmmm. Bet Trump does now.
A royal musing . . .
My dears. Please note this latest royal revelation from Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge — and future Queen of England if hubby Prince William accedes to the Throne of England.
The royal couple has a new pet for Prince George and Princess Charlotte.
A family rodent.
It is a hamster named “Marvin.”
The royal pet will be housed at the couple’s country home.
Osama drama . . .
It was “the biggest moment of my life in a professional sense,” former White House chief of staff Bill Daley told a group of PR mavens in Chicago recently.
• Backshot: Thus spoke Daley, whose facial expression in a famous photo op appeared calmly intense in the White House Situation Room while he watched the takedown of Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in Pakistan on May 2, 2011.
I spy . . .
Boston Red Sox players David “Big Papi” Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez at Carmine’s on Tuesday night, with Ortiz bear-hugging his waiter by lifting him off the ground. . . . Former Chicago Bear and Super Bowl XX MVP Richard Dent dined at Harry Caray’s Water Tower restaurant with friends during the NFL Draft. . . . CBS Sports analyst Deion Sanders spotted at ZipFit Denim shopping for his favorite jeans over the NFL Draft weekend.
Sneedlings . . .
Today’s birthdays: Adele, 28; Henry Cavill, 33, and Arny Granat, ageless.