Roger Ebert, the film critic who gained fame with his “Siskel and Ebert” program decades ago, had stopped appearing on television movie review shows in 2006 when major cancer surgery left him mute. But thanks to modern technology, now he’s got his own segment on a new program, “Ebert Presents at the Movies” on PBS. The weekly show debuts Friday on PBS affiliates nationwide with co-hosts Christy Lemire of The Associated Press and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of Mubi.com. (Photo credit AP/Charles Rex Arbogast)
“Can you think of another TV show that deals with the movies as movies instead of as celebrity showcases?” Ebert says during an interview with The Associated Press at the WTTW-TV Chicago studio where the show is produced. His laptop computer speaks his typed answers. “We don’t praise everything.”
Ebert, The Pulitzer Prize-winning Chicago Sun-Times film critic, will use his computer voice for the segment “Roger’s Office,” which he says will focus on “reviews and rants.”
“This all started in this building in that studio in January 1976, maybe to the day,” Ebert says. “What a long, strange journey it has been.”
Ebert, 68, appeared with a series of co-hosts after Siskel died in 1999. A year later, Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper joined him.