North Riverside family on silver screen

KOSEY'S CORNER

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JOANNE KOSEY

Lights! Camera! Action! Roll out the red carpet, because here come the Skryds!

With an introduction like that, if the Skryd family of North Riverside ever needs a publicist sign me on. That's because the family is on the silver screen, albeit as extras.

Currently, they are starring, er ... extra-ing, in the movie "Uncle Nino," which stars Cicero native Joe Mantegna and Anne Archer. Filmed in Glenview, Darien and Lake Forest High School, it tells the story of Uncle Nino (played by Pierino Moscarino, who comes to visit his "Americanized" family from his native Tuscany.

A sweet story, it tells of the relationship between the characters played by Mantegna, Archer, their children (the little girl is played by Mantegna's own daughter, Gina) and Uncle Nino.

The Skryd family's involvement in the movie started when Sue Skryd's sister, Denise, encountered the film crew and stopped to ask about it. She was told the movie needed extras and that if she knew anyone who was interested to have them send in pictures.

Well, the Skryds did just that, and they soon received a call asking Sue and her daughters, Stephanie, Brittany and Kristen, to come on down to the set.

Sue says she can be seen in a scene shot at the Eagle food store in Darien. Told to wear bright clothes for the scene, Sue said she can be recognized by her pink pants and striped shirt.

Daughters Kristen and Stephanie are also in the grocery store scene where Uncle Nino is in the produce department. They can also be seen in shots taken at the high school during a "battle of the band" sequence. Now you know who to look for and where.

"Uncle Nino" is not the first extra job for the Skryd girls. They also appeared briefly in "Weatherman," shot in Chicago and starring Nicholas Cage. Sue Skryd likes to say she "brushed shoulders" with Cage.

Other "brushes" with stars happened while in California visiting another sister. The family went to movie premiers for "13 Going on 30," "Identity" and "Samurai." At the premiers, they were able to spot Mark Russell, Jennifer Garner, Brittney Murphy, Annette Bening, Penelope Cruz and, yes, Tom Cruise himself.

Cruise got high ratings from the Skryds as a "very nice person" who gave his fans attention, letting them take pictures and signing autographs. (And we thought he was just cute!)

Will there be more extra work for the Skryds? According to Sue, she would certainly like to do more pictures. The old saying goes, "you ought to be in pictures," so here's hoping you are.

"Uncle Nino" is being shown at selected theaters in the Chicago area. For more information on the movie, you can check out the Web site at www.uncleninothemovie,com.

Maybe when the movie is on DVD, we can all go to the Skryds for a "premier" party. I'll bring the popcorn?"from Aunt Diana's, of course!

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