Roget Ebert, 1942 – 2013
Perhaps one of the most influential film critics of all time, Roger Joseph Ebert passed away yesterday at the age of 70, after a long battle with cancer. The Chicago Sun-Times film critic had an illustrious career which started in 1967 when at the age of 25, he started critiquing movies.
In 1975, Ebert was the first film critic ever to be the recipient of a Pulitzer for criticism, and also started the At The Movies with Siskel and Ebert movie review show with film critic and Chicago Tribune rival, writer Gene Siskel. The show was later picked up by local Chicago PBS channel in 1978 and later went nationally with PBS, through commercial syndication in 1982.
The duo was known for their harsh criticism of movies and bantering with each other, but was more remembered for their overall iconic “Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down” review. The pair continued with the show for 23 years until Siskel’s death in 1999. After Siskel’s passing Ebert was paired with fellow Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper.
At The Movies with Ebert and Roeper produced over 200 episodes and became a top-rated weekly syndicated 30 minute show. But lest we forget, as much as Ebert appeared in front of the camera, he was also behind the camera, as he wrote the screenplays for Beyond the Valley of the Dolls in 1970, Up! in 1976 as well as Beneath the Valley of the Ultra- Vixens in 1979. Ebert was also a respected author, with books like Act of Passion, Rule of Thumb: Roger Ebert at the Movies, Roger Ebert: Movie Yearbook(s) which spans into its 25th edition and his memoir Life Itself.
Roger Ebert’s career spanned 46 years. He is one of the most highly respected writers and columnists of all time as well as one of the most decorated movie critics with merits and awards that have accumulated for over 40 plus years. Ebert garnered multiple Primetime and Daytime Emmys for his Siskel and Ebert show. He is a recipient of the Directors Guild of America’s Honorary Life Member Award, and Special Achievement Award from the American Society of Cinematographers. To cap off such an illustrious career, he even has a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
In my opinion, there will never be another movie critic that has the respect of his peers like Roger Ebert. If it wasn’t for him we wouldn’t have movie review sites like Rotten Tomatoes, Meta Critic or even our own site, Nerdlocker. With over 800,000 followers on Twitter and countless imitators to every genre of entertainment, Roger Ebert is the definition of the word Critic.
On behalf of the whole team here at Nerdlocker, I’d like to thank you Mr.Ebert for the contribution to our business…
Roger Ebert. R.I.P. 1949-2013.