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April 20, 2014

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Roger Ebert Angry Over Siskel Tribute Video's Removal

by Joel Keller, posted Feb 16th 2010 5:02PM
Roger Ebert at the Toronto Film Festival 2009Anyone who thinks that we in the blogging, Twittering, Facebooking universe have hastened the death of the long-form magazine story as we know it needs to take a look at this Esquire profile of Roger Ebert, written by Chris Jones.

As fans of 'At The Movies' know, Ebert's been off the air for almost four years, since complications from cancer surgery on his jaw left him unable to eat, drink, or speak. The pictures of Ebert that accompany the story are stark; no matter how many times I see it, the image of the withered lower half of his face is tough to see.

The article, though, is inspiring; it shows an Ebert who has been able to come to terms with how he's currently living his life and how he navigates through it, mostly through the excellent writing on his Chicago Sun-Times blog. But the most emotionally-charged moment in the whole story was his visible anger at seeing that the video of his 1999 Gene Siskel tribute show has been pulled off his 2009 blog entry about his partner and friend's death.

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A tribute to Siskel & Ebert

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 14th 2009 2:03PM
Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert can probably be credited with really getting everyone interested in movie criticism. Before Sneak Previews, people would read movie reviews, sure, but they brought intelligent film criticism to television and became a huge part of pop culture.

This is a tribute from The Nostalgia Critic, and he covers the history of the show, from the start on PBS to the death of Siskel in 1999 to the hosts that eventually replaced them. He probably needs to get a better microphone, but it's well-done.(Slightly NSFW.)

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Nobody likes the new At The Movies

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 29th 2008 7:02PM
Ben LyonsI admit, I still watch At The Movies. Though I miss both Roger Ebert and Richard Roeper, I like having a weekly film review show that I can turn to. Of course, the show is a bit of a mess, and film critics Ben Lyons and Ben Mankiewicz don't have a tenth the influence (or movie knowledge) of Ebert, but I still find myself tuning in every Sunday night.

Other people are turning in each week too, only they dislike the show even more than I do. Specifically, they can't stand new critic Ben Lyons, son of Jeffrey and the host of several other shows on TV, including Nickelodeon's My Family's Got Guts.

He also reviews movies and does entertainment reporting for E! Fans think he's a "quote whore" (he's the guy who called I Am Legend "one of the greatest movies ever made"), too buddy-buddy with celebrities, and only got the job because he's the son of film critic Jeffrey Lyons. These people have even started a web site, StopBenLyons.com.

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At the Movies meets Entourage in season premiere

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 23rd 2008 9:07AM
Medillin - vinceLast season on Entourage, when Vincent Chase decided to put his own money into Medellin it was a major risk and he knew it. He was rolling the dice on his career, taking a leap of faith by choosing to do a controversial biography of a vicious Colombian drug lord. In Spanish. Directed by a hot-headed genius/madman named Billy Walsh.

Vinney was playing with dynamite. It wasn't good for Vincent's career, but it was great for Entourage. Failure is always funnier than success, isn't it?

Well, as bad as viewers thought Medellin seemed to be based on the brief scenes we saw last season, in the September 7th premiere on HBO, the media weighs in. At the Movies' critics Michael Phillips and Richard Roeper filmed a fictional review of Medellin to be shown in season premiere of Entourage, and it's not good. In fact, if they were stilling using the thumb-o-meter, Medellin would get two big thumbs-down.

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Here are the replacements for Ebert and Roeper

by Bob Sassone, posted Jul 22nd 2008 1:02PM

Mankiewicz and LyonsAllison told you yesterday that both Roger Ebert and Richard Roeper were leaving their film review show, At The Movies. Ebert has been off the show since 2006 because of health problems and Roeper couldn't come to terms on a new contract. They both explained that Buena Vista wants to take the show in a new direction and that they wouldn't be a part of it. Here is that new direction.

The new hosts of At The Movies are Ben Mankiewicz, a host on TCM, and Ben Lyons, from E!. Not sure how these two got to be the new hosts, other than the fact that they're both named Ben and I'm sure we'll see some cute reference to that, maybe even in the ads or the intro. I like the fact that Mankiewicz is from TCM; makes it sound like he knows what he's talking about (he's also the son of Frank Mankiewicz and the grandson of the guy who wrote Citizen Kane). But Lyons looks about 14 years-old and comes from a network with celeb gossip and reality shows, so that has me a little worried.

Then again, he's the son of film critic Jeffrey Lyons (the host of his own movie review show, Reel Talk), so maybe it's in his blood. But the article above says he called I Am Legend one of the greatest films ever made? Yikes.

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Is this the end of At the Movies with Ebert & Roeper?

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 21st 2008 2:01PM
Ebert & RoeperI think this was a demise that you could see coming. Remember, back in April, when Chicago Sun-Times film reviewer Roger Ebert and the star of At the Movies with Ebert & Roeper announced he would never be able to return to the TV show because of his health? You knew it then. Now comes the news that the other half of the show, Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper, is leaving the program. He's been co-host for eight years, having assumed the seat across the aisle that was originally held by the late movie critic Gene Siskel.

"Several months ago, Disney offered to extend my contract, which expires at the conclusion of the 2007-08 season," Roeper told the Associated Press.

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Update on film critic Roger Ebert

by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 1st 2008 7:21PM
Roger EbertI love movies. I'm a movie buff and always have been. I appreciate film critics, even when I don't agree with them. So, today, on the anniversary of Roger Ebert's 41st year reviewing movies for the Chicago Sun-Times, I'm glad to report that Roger Ebert will soon be back reviewing movies. Unfortunately, the same is not true of his ability to appear on his syndicated TV show, At the Movies with Ebert & Roeper.

In a letter to his fans, Roger wrote: "I am at last returning to the movie beat. After my current stay at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, I'm looking forward to opening night of my annual film festival at the University of Illinois on April 23, and I will resume writing movie reviews shortly thereafter. Are you as bored with my health as I am? I underwent a third surgery in January, this one in Houston, and once again there were complications. I am sorry to say that my ability to speak was not restored. That would require another surgery."

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Roger Ebert has more surgery today

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 24th 2008 3:27PM

EbertWe've all been waiting a long time for Roger Ebert to come back to his seat on Ebert & Roeper, and now it looks like we might have to wait a while longer.

Ebert writes in a message on his web site that he has gone in for more surgery today. He doesn't go into details about the procedure, but he says that he hopes that this will "solve some problems I've been living with." He won't be in the hospital as long as he was before, but it's not day surgery either. He'll be in there long enough to have prepared some film reviews and other columns in advance so they can run while he's away.

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Ebert holds his thumbs hostage

by Varun Lella, posted Aug 28th 2007 11:01AM
Roger EbertI love thumbs as much as the next guy. They allow me to grab things, I can use them for sucking in place of my pacifier and, most importantly, they allow me to pass pure, unadulterated judgment on everything from my mom's home-cooked meals (thumbs up) to my new neighbor Steve (sorry Stevie).

However, with the news that film critic Roger Ebert plans on withholding his famous thumb movie rating scale, I have grown tired of the thumb. I really wouldn't mind if you just lop it off (his, not mine).

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Richard Roeper to host new Starz show

by Bob Sassone, posted Jul 26th 2007 8:00AM

Richard RoeperEbert & Roeper co-host Richard Roeper has a new gig, host of the new monthly Starz series Starz Inside.

Or maybe we should say Roeper has another gig, as he'll be staying with the longrunning syndicated movie review show too. Starz Inside will be a series of specials that take a behind the scenes look at the movie industry. Episodes will include "Fog City Mavericks: The Filmmakers of San Francisco," which will feature George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola, Clint Eastwood, and Chris Columbus and "Hollywood Goes Gaming," which will have the history of video games and their effect on the movie industry. They'll even have an episode on "Bloodsucking Cinema," which will showcase the world of vampires on the big screen.

The show premieres on September 24 at 9pm.

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Ebert to return for the Oscars

by Anna Johns, posted Oct 12th 2006 6:03PM
roger ebertMovie critic Roger Ebert is still recovering from surgery he had in June to remove a cancerous growth on his salivary gland and then emergency surgery he had in July when a blood vessel burst. Ebert published a letter in Thursday's Chicago Sun-Times saying that he hopes to be back at work (at the paper and on television) in time for the Oscars and the Cannes Film Festival. He also said he plans to review The Queen, starring Helen Mirren, in this Friday's newspaper since a producer managed to get him a DVD copy of the film.

Since Ebert left his television show, Richard Roeper has hosted various guest film critics including Kevin Smith and Jay Leno. This week's co-host is A.O. Scott, a reviewer for the New York Times.

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Roger Ebert writes about his long recovery

by Joel Keller, posted Aug 18th 2006 5:40PM
Roger EbertFor those who have been wondering when Roger Ebert was going to come back and start arguing with Richard Roeper again, you're going to have to wait a little while. Ebert himself sent an e-mail to RogerEbert.com that discusses his longer-than-expected recovery from three recent surgeries: one to remove a cancerous salivary gland from his right jaw, one to fix a burst blood vessel that were weakened by radiation treatments he had three years ago, and another that was not specified.

So, because of all the surgery, Ebert has been in the hospital since June. "I had no idea when I went into the hospital on June 16 that I would still be here on August 16," he writes. He currently is having problems speaking and is weak from all the time in bed. But he seems to be recovering well, even watching movies on a plasma TV that his Ebert & Roeper producer brought to his hospital room. He definitely wants to watch the movie Half Nelson, which substitute critic Kevin Smith said was one of the best movies he's seen in the last ten years. It's too bad he can't speak; I'd have loved it if he and Roeper did an episode from his hospital room.

[via Romenesko]

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Leno the latest to sub for Roger Ebert

by Joel Keller, posted Jul 28th 2006 6:05PM
Jay LenoI find it interesting that during Roger Ebert's absence from Ebert & Roeper, the producers (or maybe Ebert) have decided to use non-critics as substitutes. If you recall, when Gene Siskel was ill (and later, as they were looking for replacements after his death) most of the substitutes were other movie critics. But not now. First we heard that Kevin Smith is going to make an appearance across the aisle from Rich Roeper; now, the next high-profile fill-in wil be none other than Jay Leno, according to TV Week.

The episode will be for next weekend, Aug. 4-5 (movies reviewed will include the new Will Ferrel movie Talladega Nights, Little Miss Sunshine, and Miami Vice). The show will be taped in L.A. instead of Chicago to acommodate Leno's notoriously tight schedule.

So who's the next guest reviewer? My money's on Al Roker.

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Kevin Smith is filling in for Roger Ebert

by Anna Johns, posted Jul 27th 2006 12:18PM
kevin smithIs this Ebert and Roeper's way of sticking it to fellow critic Joel Siegel? For next week's episode of Ebert & Roeper, director Kevin Smith will fill in (he says so on his website). Smith, you probably recall, is in a bit of a bouhaha with Siegel, who walked out of Clerks II in a big huff. He'll be filling Ebert's shoes for one week as the legendary movie critic recovers from emergency surgery. Smith and Roeper will review Miami Vice, Ant Bully, Talladega Nights, Barnyard and (maybe) World Trade Center.

I, for one, am totally interested in what Kevin Smith has to say about all of those movies. He's a huge movie fan and will probably formulate very insightful opinions. I can't decide what I want to see more: Smith bashing Roeper or Miami Vice.

[Via Lost Remote]

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Roger Ebert in serious condition after emergency surgery

by Richard Keller, posted Jul 2nd 2006 11:10PM

Film Critic Roger EbertFilm critic Roger Ebert was reported hospitalized in serious condition Sunday after emergency surgery was performed on him Saturday evening.

The operation was needed to correct damage that was caused by an earlier procedure that took place back on June 16th to remove a cancerous growth on his salivary gland. Repaired was a blood vessel that broke near the area where the June operation took place. Ebert has had a series of operations to remove cancers. Back in 2002 he underwent surgery for papillary thyroid cancer. One year later he went under the knife to remove an earlier growth on his salivary gland.

Richard Roeper, Ebert's current co-host on their nationally syndicated movie-review show, told the Chicago Sun-Times that Roger was stable after the emergency procedure and that he was expected to make a full recovery. Roeper replaced Ebert's former partner, Gene Siskel, back in 2000 after Siskel passed away a year earlier.

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