The home of the Evanston History Center will play a role next week in the filming of the pilot for an NBC television series called “Playboy” based on the early days of Hugh Hefner’s Playboy Club empire.

The History Center’s director, Eden Juron Pearlman, says crews are expected to be at the Dawes House at 225 Greenwood St. for a couple of days.


In addition to filming in rooms on the building’s first floor, Pearlman says a couple of second floor bedrooms are scheduled to be the film settings for “dorms” that housed the young women who became the “bunnies” that made the clubs famous to a generation.

The show-biz trade publication Variety says the new series is designed to build on the popularity of the cable-TV series Mad Men, which is spawning a cluster of new shows themed around the 1960s beginnings of the sexual revolution.

Pearlman says the history center gets scouted on a semi-regular basis for various film projects and that the staff has been working almost a full week to prepare for next week’s shoot.

She says most previous shoots have focused on the exterior of the building — notably the 2002 film “Road to Perdition” in which the center was used to portray the home of the mobster character played by Paul Newman.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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