News / Arts & Entertainment

Influential US Film Critic Roger Ebert Dead at 70

FILE - Film critic Roger Ebert and his wife Chaz Ebert arrive at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival, Canada, Sept. 13, 2011.
FILE - Film critic Roger Ebert and his wife Chaz Ebert arrive at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival, Canada, Sept. 13, 2011.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Pulitzer-Prize winning film critic Roger Ebert died on Thursday, the Chicago Sun-Times said, two days after he said his cancer of 10 years ago had returned.

"It is with a heavy heart we report that legendary film critic Roger Ebert has passed away,'' the newspaper where Ebert worked for decades said on Twitter. "There is a hole that can't be filled. One of the greats has left us. Roger Ebert has passed away at the age of 70.''

Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper (L) and Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert. (Undated photo)Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper (L) and Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert. (Undated photo)
x
Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper (L) and Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert. (Undated photo)
Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper (L) and Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert. (Undated photo)
Ebert gained national prominence with fellow Chicago film critic Gene Siskel on the television show "At the Movies with Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert,'' coining the phrase "Two Thumbs Up.'' After Siskel's death in 1999, Ebert teamed with critic Richard Roeper, but later quit for health reasons.

Ebert, one of the most widely read movie critics in the United States, lost his ability to speak and eat after surgeries for thyroid and salivary gland cancer in 2002 and 2003.

On Tuesday, he posted a blog entry saying he was taking a "leave of presence'' from his more than 40-year career and scaling back his work after doctors diagnosed his cancer had returned.

It was discovered by doctors after he fractured his hip in December.

"The 'painful fracture' that made it difficult for me to walk has recently been revealed to be a cancer," Ebert said in the blog posting, giving no further details about the type of cancer or diagnosis.

"I am not going away," he added. ''My intent is to continue to write selected reviews ... What's more, I'll be able at last to do what I've always fantasized about doing: reviewing only the movies I want to review."

Ebert's reviews were syndicated to more than 200 newspapers and he had been reviewing films for the Chicago Sun-Times since 1967. He won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism in 1975.

Forbes magazine dubbed Ebert the most powerful pundit in America in 2007.

You May Like

Multimedia Relatives of South Korean Ferry Victims Fire at Authorities

46 people are confirmed dead, but some 250 remain trapped inside sunken ferry More

War Legacy Haunts Vietnam, US Relations

$84 million project aims to clean up soil contaminated by Agent Orange More

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

Saxophonist Craig Handy has an exciting new band called 2nd Line Smith, which combines the organ-jazz repertoire of Jimmy Smith with the “second line” rhythms of New Orleans parade music. Craig Handy joins "Beyond Category" host Eric Felten at Washington’s Bohemian Caverns jazz club to talk about the music and perform with the band.

Blogs