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Roger Ebert is not retiring. He’s not giving up, and he’s not complaining. He’s just going to take a few steps back and review less movies in order to devote more attention to his health. The beloved critic announced earlier this week in a lengthy and touching blog post that his doctors have discovered more cancer and are aggressively fighting it with radiation. He’s hopeful, but given his first-hand knowledge, he knows writing between two hundred and three hundred reviews a year simply isn’t possible, especially given all the other plans he has.
As much as Ebert’s message was one of sadness, it was also one of hope. He’s planning to embark on a Kickstarter campaign to relaunch At The Movies, and he’s redoing his official website to bring aboard more writers. Add that to the documentary about his life several high profile filmmakers are currently working on and the bigger release movies he’s still planning to write and we should continue seeing plenty of the famous journalist, which is the way it should be.
Ebert might not be the most physically imposing man in the world, but he’s been a fighter, both with his opinions and his immune system, for the entirety of his life. No doubt he will scrap and claw with a vengeance during his struggle. Selfishly, I hope he pauses as much as he can from that battle to give us some more great insights on movies.
Get well soon, Roger.