Dean Richards

Dean Richards is WGN-TV’s Emmy Award-winning entertainment reporter and critic. His work is seen and heard on several Tribune Media-owned properties and he was cited in a New York Times front-page article as “Tribune Company’s Man of Many Hats.”
Dean joined WGN-TV as a staff announcer in 1991. In 1998, he appeared as a guest reviewer and was brought onboard as a regular contributor soon after. His entertainment reports and reviews are seen on “WGN Morning News,” “WGN Midday News,” “WGN Evening News” and “WGN News at Nine,” where he interviews national and local celebrities, reports on showbiz and reviews the latest movies. He has also hosted and co-produced specials such as the award-winning “Bozo, Gar & Ray: WGN TV Classics,” the Oscar preview special “The Envelope Please” and “Stories of Hope: Facing Breast Cancer.” Dean has also contributed to national cable channel WGN America, classic TV network Antenna TV, and Tribune Publishing’s Chicago Tribune and RedEye. On May 20, 2016, he was inducted into the Chicago Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences’ Silver Circle.
On WGN Radio (720 AM), “Dean Richards’ Sunday Morning” covers Chicago’s entertainment and lifestyle scene including movies, theater, food and dining, Sundays from 9am-1pm. Dean’s entertainment reports can also be heard on “The Steve Cochran Show” weekdays at 8:10am and “The Bill & Wendy Show” Thursdays at 11:35am. Since joining WGN Radio in 1994, he has won over 30 local and national awards for programming and production, including the Peter Lisagor Award for Outstanding Journalism, the Associated Press Best Feature of the Year, the Illinois Broadcasters Association, UPI, Chicago A.I.R. Awards, and Promax International Promotion and Marketing Awards. On May 27, 2016, Dean was enshrined with a bronze plaque on The WGN Radio Walk of Fame, which honors the station’s legendary talent, outside its Tribune Tower showcase studio on Michigan Avenue.
Dean’s annual radio and television specials on the fight against breast cancer have also garnered many national and local awards and citations from breast cancer organizations, including the “Y-ME” National Breast Cancer Organization’s “Outstanding Media” Award, for their contributions to the fight against the disease.
On and off the air, Dean has been a tireless worker related to HIV/AIDS issues, hosting charitable functions for decades including “AIDS Run & Walk Chicago” and “Dance for Life Chicago.” He has lent support to numerous organizations including Howard Brown Health Center, Horizons Community Services (now Center on Halsted), Open Hand Chicago, and was awarded a citation by Stop AIDS Chicago for his contributions to the fight against AIDS. The AIDS Foundation of Chicago also recognized him in their annual “Faces of AIDS” publication for bringing HIV/AIDS issues to mainstream media and, in 2006, cited him with a special commendation for his work in the field.
For over 25 years, Dean was part of the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon benefitting the Muscular Dystrophy Association, many of those years as the telethon’s co-host on WGN-TV. He has also hosted numerous events for hunger, homeless, and domestic violence organizations.
A native of Chicago, Dean worked his way through a string of suburban Chicago radio stations after completing his Broadcast Communications/Marketing degree at Columbia College. A veteran of the Chicago’s broadcasting scene since 1975, he has worked at WNUA, WCLR, WIND, WCFL, WFYR, WPWR and WFLD. He also hosted a nationally-syndicated morning radio program for the ABC Radio Network, while also acting as its Operations Manager.

Recent Articles
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    Calling all Tiny Tims! Goodman Theatre holding kids auditions August 27

    If you have a young actor in your house, they could be part of the Goodman Theater’s annual production of “A Christmas Carol.” Open auditions will take place on Saturday, August 27 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Goodman Theatre, located at 170 N Dearborn. All genders and ethnicities, between the ages of 5 and 17, are welcome. Prior experience is not required. Performers will audition for the roles of Tiny Tim, Emily Cratchit, Belinda Cratchit and Turkey Boy. The […]

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    Dean’s Weekend Reviews: ‘Jason Bourne,’ ‘Bad Moms’

    It’s the role Matt Damon was Bourne to play, and he’s leading the way at the movies this weekend. WGN’s entertainment critic Dean Richards reviews this weekend’s movies.

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    Dean’s Reviews: ‘Jason Bourne’, ‘Bad Moms’

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    Red Bull TV gives viewers ‘behind the scene action’ to Lollapalooza

    Dean talked with Hannah Rad from Red Bull TV to discuss this new viewing experience. Viewers can visit or download the free app to gain live stream access to Lollapalooza.      

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    Red carpet interview with Woody Allen at Chicago History Museum

    CHICAGO — He’s a four-time Oscar winner known for being reclusive but Woody Allen walked the red carpet in Chicago Thursday night. The “Annie Hall” star/writer/director was in town with wife of 20-years, Soon-Yi, at the Chicago History Museum where there was a special screening of his latest movie, “Cafe Society” that stars Steve Carell and Twilight’s Kristen Stewart. Allen’s new movie, “Cafe Society” is the first that he shot all digital. WGN’s Dean Richards interviewed Allen on the red carpet:

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    Dean’s Reviews: ‘Star Trek Beyond’, ‘Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie’, ‘Lights Out’

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    Garry Marshall, ‘Happy Days’ creator and ‘Pretty Woman’ director, dies at 81

    LOS ANGELES — Famed director and producer Garry Marshall has died. He was 81 years old. Marshall, who created some of the most popular 1970’s TV shows — including “Mork and Mindy” and “Happy Days,” and directed hit films like “Pretty Woman” and “The Princess Diaries” — died Tuesday in a Burbank hospital, his publicist Michelle Bega confirmed. Marshall passed away from complications of pneumonia following a stroke at a hospital, Bega said in a statement Tuesday. The Hollywood legend directed, […]

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    Lady Gaga and fiance Taylor Kinney reportedly break up

    Lady Gaga and her fiance, Taylor Kinney, have reportedly called it quits. According to TMZ, sources say the couple ended their five-year relationship earlier this month. The reason for the break-up is unknown at this time. Observers say the ‘Chicago Fire’ star and pop singer have been noticeably absent from each other’s lives at events and social media lately. Gaga is in Cabo right now, and was spotted without her engagement ring last week in Malibu. Kinney proposed to Gaga on Valentine’s Day in 2015, but a […]

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    Dean’s Reviews: ‘Ghostbusters’, ‘Infiltrator’

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    Chicago cast for ‘Hamilton’ revealed

    CHICAGO — Local theater-goers, rejoice! The Chicago cast for “Hamilton” was announced Wednesday. Karen Olivo, who won the Tony Award for her portrayal of Anita in the 2009 Broadway revival of “West Side Story” will be playing the role of Angelica Schuyler. Broadway veterans Miguel Cervantes and Alexander Gemignani will be playing Alexander Hamilton and King George III, respectively. Other principal roles in “Hamilton” in Chicago will be played by a talented young company comprised of Ari Afsar as Eliza Hamilton; Chris Lee as […]