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RIP Roger Ebert

I was very saddened today to hear of the death of Roger Ebert.

Roger (somehow I think of him as 'Roger,' not 'Ebert,' though I never met him in the flesh, and spoke to him only once, by telephone, in the early 1970s when both of us were young and dinosaurs roamed the earth) has been my favorite film critic since forever. I did not always agree with him, but I always found him insightful and fun to read. He was not just a terrific critic, he was a terrific WRITER. His shows with Gene Siskel, SNEAK PREVIEWS and SISKEL AND EBERT AT THE MOVIES, were must-see TV for me. A hundred other teams have tried to recapture their magic, but none came close.

He was One of Us too. A fan, and an SF fan at that. In his youth, he wrote for fanzines, and he even published a few short SF stories in Ted White's AMAZING and FANTASTIC along about the same time I was publishing in those selfsame magazines. If he had not gone on to be the world's best film critic, he might well have been a successful SF writer.

A brilliant man, a good life. I give him two thumbs up.


Bryan Cogman
Apr. 6th, 2013 12:21 am (UTC)
This makes me very very sad. In fact, I haven't been this sad about a celebrity's death since Jim Henson. As a budding film nut, I devoured his 'home video companion', watched his TV show religiously, visited his website weekly, treasured his "Great Movies" books... He exposed me at a young age to dozens of films, directors, and writers that I never would have been aware of otherwise.

Many years ago, I saw (and hated) MULHOLLAND DRIVE. Ebert gave it a four star review. I wrote him a comment on his 'movie answer man' message board to tell him why I hated it. To my surprise and delight, he emailed me back PERSONALLY to tell me why I was wrong! (I was right, by the way).

Guess I'll have to get used to a world where Roger Ebert isn't around to review the latest theatrical release or recommend a classic I haven't seen yet. Feel like I lost a friend.


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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