Eberts Put At the Movies on Hiatus
By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on Dec 1, 2011 3:00PM
The announcement isn't surprising and was expected after Ebert announced on Nov. 6 he and wife Chaz had been underwriting the resurrected At the Movies since its January launch and that they needed funding to continue the show. "Unless we find an angel," Ebert wrote, "our television program will go off the air at the end of its current season."
According to Ebert, the response from supporters has been overwhelming, but the need for public television stations across the country to set their programming schedules for the beginning of 2012 necessitated the move.
"We've spoken to the top executives of several channels and film distributors, charitable foundations, web delivery services, potential corporate sponsors, and crowd-funding sources. And we are still talking with them, but the time crunch has intervened. It is a complicated process, and so we are going on hiatus while we sort it out."
Ebert is taking a glass half full approach with regards to calling the show a success, noting that 50 episodes of At the Movies have been produced; the show was broadcast in the country's top 50 markets; the development of a team of contributors who provide video essays and reports from film festivals; and the "chemistry" of co-hosts Christy Lemire and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky.
He also hopes the hiatus is brief and that he even may launch a Kickstarter campaign to raise the necessary funds to bring At the Movies back to the airwaves