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SHOW PATROL

Showtime orders 2nd season of Chicago-shot 'Shameless'

By Curt Wagner

RedEye

3:58 PM CST, February 28, 2011

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Showtime has ordered a 12-episode second season of "Shameless," which means the drama can return to Chicago for filming later this year.

"Shameless," which stars Chicago native Joan Cusack, William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum, filmed about 90 percent of the exterior scenes for its currently airing first season in Chicago, executive producer John Wells told me earlier this month.

The production mostly filmed on the South Side in Lawndale, Bronzeville and Olive Park, but also shot scenes downtown, like outside Hotel 71, 71 E Wacker Dr. (see photo of Rossum above).

Showtime has not announced when Season 2 filming might begin, but Wells said he might try to shoot here before bad weather threatens.

"If we get a second season we may set that in the summer and fall, just to give ourselves a break next time," Wells said Feb. 2, the day snowpocalypse shut down filming here.

The drama, from Wells and Paul Abbott and based on a British hit, tells the story of the working class Gallagher family and their friends, enemies and neighbors.

"John Wells is carving out a tone that is truly unique in the television landscape—equal parts drama and comedy," David Nevins, Showtime's president of entertainment, said in a statement.

Showtime also picked up its Matt LeBlanc comedy, "Episodes," for a second season, but did not say for how many episodes.