Saturday, April 6, 2013

Roger Ebert (1942 - 2013)

A few days ago Roger Ebert wrote a blog post where he discussed taking what he called a "Leave of Presence." He was planning to cut back on the number of reviews he was writing in order to concentrate on a few other projects. He jokes that he would finally get to do what he had always dreamed of, reviewing only the movies he wanted to see. He also discussed launching a Kick Starter to get his TV show "At the Movies" back on the air. He probably didn't know at the time that it would be the last blog post he would write.

I didn't read that blog post when he first wrote it. I filed it away to read later, which is of course code for "I'd like to read this but I'll probably forget about it after a couple days." If Roger Ebert had not died I might have never read it. When I heard about his death Thursday afternoon, I immediately went back to read his post. I am not ashamed to say that I was holding back tears as I read it. He had to know how ill he was but he still was making so many plans for what he wanted to do with his life. 

He never gave up on life. Years ago when cancer took his voice, a point when many people may have given up, he found a new voice on the internet. He took to blogging and Twitter and earned himself a completely new fan base in the process. He quickly became one of the most prominent celebrities on Twitter. You already know all this though, I don't need to tell you how popular the man was. Almost everyone I know followed him on Twitter and not just my film geek friends. 

It is not often that a celebrity death effects me. Sometimes I may feel a bit of sadness but then I quickly move on. Roger Ebert's death hit me very hard though. Roger Ebert was a man who was living the dream and you could tell he never took that for granted. This is a man who made a living out of being a film lover. He is the film geek that film geeks aspire to be. Not just because his love of movies made him famous but also because of how respected he was as a human being. 

He was a brilliant writer and a wonderful person. In his death the world has lost someone very special. There is no one like him and I doubt there ever will be again.

Goodbye, Roger. I may not have known you personally but I will miss you.

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