Bill Reis, considered to be Chicago’s top audio mixer, died Jan. 1 of a stroke subsequent to what appeared to be successful heart surgery a week earlier at Highland Park hospital. He had just turned 50.
Mr. Reis had worked at Spots BME for several years following eight years at now-defunct Skyview. Said Spots’ Bruce Frankel, “There was nobody nicer than Bill Reis,” a sentiment widely held throughout the community. “He was a gentleman with a good sense of humor, one of those guys you look forward to seeing in the morning.”
“He was a really lovely man,” said Filmworkers’ colorist Pete Jannotta, who worked with Mr. Reis at Skyview. “He was very kind and considerate of others and a hard-working guy. No matter what was going on with him privately, he was always happy. He wanted you to be happy with him. He had such a positive attitude, he brightened everyone’s day. That’s why this is such a sad loss for everybody.”
Mr. Reis went to Skyview from more than a dozen years at legendary Universal Recording Studios. Foote Kirkpatrick hired him in his wely twenties by Foote Kirkpatrick of legendary Universal Recording, where he became one of the biggest money-earners the studio ever had.
“He became a star in a short amount of time,” she remarked. “He was brilliant, the most talented mixer we ever had. His clients were his biggest fans. I didn’t know anyone who didn’t adore him.”
Mr. Reis is survived by his wife, Christine, and son, Bill, Jr. The wake is Sunday, Jan. 5, 4-9 p.m. at the Hanekamp Funeral Home, 385 Waukegan Rd., Northbrook. Funeral 10 a.m. Monday at St. Norbert’s church, Northbrook.