off the record
From catastrophic weather and violent school tragedies to increasing numbers of same-sex marriages and elected minorities, 2013 was a year of contrast and change. But for me, no impact hit closer to home in 2013 than the losses we chalked up among the familiar folks who signed off forever. From heroic Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid Read More
When Roger Ebert died last week at age 70, it seemed that everyone had a story or a fond memory to share about him. It’s rare for a critic to be so beloved, but Mr. Ebert—much like Christopher Hitchens, who died in 2011—had a reputation for kindness, even if his writing could sting.
“It’s a Read More
Several years ago, I was going through a bunch of YouTube reels from At the Movies, and noticed a funny thing: Roger Ebert’s relationship with his co-host, Gene Siskel, was way less amicable than I remember it being as a kid. Or maybe the Internet just had a fascination with the way that Mr. Ebert–the more cynical, cerebral of the pair–loved to take the piss out of his partner.
I quickly made a mashup of this phenomena, titled it “The Darker Side of Siskel and Ebert,” and sent it off into the ether of the Internet (at the time, an AOL-owned site called Urlesque.com), not really thinking much of it.
The next day, Mr. Ebert tweeted the video to his hundreds of thousands of followers, a move that showed one of the critic’s greatest qualities: the ability not to take anything, especially himself, too seriously.
Now that Mr. Ebert and Mr. Siskel have both passed away, I’m reposting this video as a tribute for two of the greatest voices in cinema history. Enjoy.
Roger Ebert, the prolific film critic who, for better or worse, pioneered the “thumbs up, thumbs down” rating system, died today after a long battle with cancer, the Chicago Sun-Times–where he became a film critic in 1967–reports. He was 70.
“It’s a very sad day for anyone who cares about newspapers,” said Robert Kurson, an author Read More
Eat, Pray, Love director Ryan Murphy isn’t afraid to hype his product. He recently stated in a press conference that an eating scene in the new Julia Roberts flick “is one of the most controversial scenes ever caught on film.” Murphy goes on to say that due to cultural Read More
Roger Ebert has sold a memoir to Mitch Hoffman of Grand Central, in a deal brokered by Joel Gotler at Intellectual Property Group and announced last night on Publishers Marketplace. The book went for a sum in the high six figures at auction, and is due out in fall 2011.
The film-critic-turned-Twitter-fiend has been having Read More
The results are in for this year’s Webby Awards.
The New York Times and College Humor lead the winners with five Webbys apiece. The Times took home both Best News site and Best Feature for David Rohde’s “Held by the Taliban.”
Roger Ebert was named Person of the Year and Google’s Read More
What with the cancellation of “At the Movies” and the recent allegations against pervy photographer Terry Richardson, these are difficult days for our second-favorite gesture involving the raising of a single digit. (A commenter on Fashionista alleged that Richardson even went so far as to remove photos of himself giving the thumbs Read More
Reason No. 68 why the disconnect between film critics and moviegoers is bigger than ever: The elitism of the old guard. Over the course of the past week, well known and nominally intelligent film critics Roger Ebert and A.O. Scott both wrote that the decline of the film industry Read More
Chace Crawford is no East Coast elitist! The Gossip Girl star told reporters that Sarah Palin is "quite attractive" before refusing to "talk politics." [US Weekly]
Lydia Hearst is expected to continue with Fashion Week, despite being sent to the hospital for kidney stones on Tuesday. [P6] Read More