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Roger Ebert

What is Ebertfest?

Roger Ebert’s Film Festival is held every April in Champaign, Illinois, and organized by the College of Media at the University of Illinois. Roger Ebert, the TV and Chicago Sun-Times film critic, was a native of the adjoining town of Urbana, Illinois and is an alumnus of the University, and founded the festival in 1999.

Read more about the festival
  • Every great film should seem new every time you see it.
  • It is reckless to make broad generalizations about any group of people.
  • I believe empathy is the most essential quality of civilization.
  • Thank you for going on this journey with me.  I’ll see you at the movies.
  • A review should reflect the immediate experience
  • My motto: 'No good movie is depressing. All bad movies are depressing.'
  • To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts.
  • We must try to contribute joy to the world.
  • Life is made up of challenges that cannot be solved but only accepted.
  • Movies that encourage empathy are more effective than those that objectify problems.
  • Sometimes miraculous films come into being, made by people you've never heard of. 
  • I like smart movies about smart people.
  • It is not enough for a movie to be righteous. It must also be watchable.
  • It's rare to find a film that goes for broke and says, 'To hell with the consequences.'
  • What I am grateful for is the gift of intelligence, and for life, love, wonder, and laughter.
  • I don't give the studios advanced quotes. I think the readers deserve to read my reviews before the studios do.
  • By going to the movies, I became a lot more open-minded.
  • If Hollywood stars speak out, so do all sorts of other people.
  • A movie isn't good or bad based on its politics. It's usually good or bad for other reasons.
  • A film is a terrible thing to waste.
  • Sometimes it's all about the casting.
  • In the world of acting, many are thin but few are talented.
  • We can't help identifying with the protagonist. It's coded in our movie-going DNA.