Oscar-nominated actor Paul Raci debuting new movie 'Sing Sing' at Chicago Critics Film Festival

ByHosea Sanders and Marsha Jordan WLS logo
Thursday, May 2, 2024
Actor Paul Raci debuting new movie at Chicago Critics Film Festival
Oscar-nominated actor Paul Raci is debuting his new movie "Sing Sing" Friday at the Chicago Critics Film Festival at the Music Box Theatre.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Oscar nominee Paul Raci is back in his hometown for opening night of the Chicago Critics Film Festival Friday at the Music Box Theatre.

The actor is debuting his new movie "Sing Sing," and he spoke with ABC7's Hosea Sanders about finally being "discovered" in Hollywood after a decades-long career that started in Chicago.

"Sing Sing" is about how a theater program transforms the lives of men in prison. Raci's character is the director who brings healing to the inmates through art.

The movie has some powerful performances.

"People should be told how much they're worth, not be devalued," Raci said. "That's what's so powerful about watching the guys go through the experience of becoming actors. My holding area, my dressing room, was a cell. We're in a prison, we're not on a set."

Raci spoke about how his life changed since all of the success started happening for him.

"I'm busy, I'm happy," Raci said. "Hey look at me ma, I'm an actor."

Raci recently turned up in a Jennifer Lopez project.

"Her people called my people. She's a lovely woman," Raci said. "My wife and I went to their Christmas party... Ben Affleck's house."

Raci and his wife, Liz, who is also his agent, are now executive producing projects like "Grateful Deaf."

"Jerry Garcia, way back in the day, had what he called the deaf zone, where deaf people could come and experience a dead head concert," Raci said. "They ended up having a deaf zone right in front of the stage for many, many years."

Raci is determined to make people see him and what he can do.

"It was a long road and blessed, and look to get offered a role like he just played in 'Sing Sing,'" Liz Raci said. "It's so beautiful and the kind of thing he wants to be doing."

Paul reminisced on his Oscars nomination.

"I can't wait to get back, are you kidding me," Raci said. "Don't forget, ours was in the train station, during the COVID pandemic. We didn't get to sit in the seats and do the thing. We wanna do that, I'm putting that out there."

Raci is one of the "Sing Sing" cast members that can be seen on the red carpet at Chicago's Music Box Theatre Friday night.

The movie is at 6:30 p.m. and will be followed by a question and answer session with the actors and filmmakers.