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Ebert Doc To Screen At Cannes

By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on Apr 29, 2014 4:00PM

Credit: Roger Ebert in 2004 (Getty Images)

Roger Ebert may no longer be on this mortal coil but his presence will be felt when the Cannes Film Festival begins next month.

Life, Itself, the Martin Scorsese and Kartemquin Films-produced, Steve James-directed documentary on the late Sun-Times film critic, will screen at Cannes with new footage added. (Life, Itself previously screened at the Siskel Film Center and at Ebertfest in Urbana.)

Ebert was a huge fan of Cannes and covered the festival for 35 years. James called the film's inclusion on the schedule an honor.

"The film's selection is a thrilling first for me and for Kartemquin. Beyond that, its also a statement about what Roger meant to the festival. He loved Cannes and Cannes loved him. We were so inspired by his writing about the festival, that we've created a new section in the film devoted to his adventures there over the years. Roger was a student of great cinema and of the dreams and spectacle that for him defined Cannes. We can't wait to share his story and our film with everyone there."

Ebert's widow Chaz was also ecstatic about the screening and added she had a busy itinerary in store for the festival.

I will go and honor his memory and stay in a hotel on the Croisette in a room that bears his name, The Roger Ebert Suite at the Hotel Splendid. And then I will go to the American Pavilion and partake of seminars in the Roger Ebert Conference Room on the beach. Not bad for someone who says he flunked French a few times and taught himself to understand it by reading TinTin comic books and listening to Monsieur Capretz. I will miss his joy at the festival and how he thrilled at each new discovery. Roger was one of the best friends of the festival and I thank the Cannes Film Festival for honoring him through the exhibition of his life's story.

Life, Itself will be released later this year.