Thursday, March 25, 2010

After 24 years, At The Movies is canceled

In 1975, PBS put together a movie review TV show which would eventually land on the name "Sneak Previews," that starred two respected newspaper Chicago critics, the Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert and the Chicago Tribune's Gene Siskel.

Siskel and Ebert trademark passionate discussions about movies eventually made them famous enough to leave PBS and move on to "Siskel & Ebert," which later was called "At The Movies" once it's famous reviewers left. Despite various names and reviewers since Siskel's passing in 1999 and Ebert's battle with thyroid cancer that sidelined him in 2006, "At The Movies," lived on although a shadow of it's former self. Let's face it, Gene and Roger made the show fun and interesting and we cared what they thought about the movies they argued about.

In a statement from Disney-ABC Domestic TV, it was announced that "At The Movies," has been canceled and will air it's final episode this summer.

Here's the announcement:

After 24 seasons with us in national syndication, the highly regarded movie review show "At the Movies" (formerly known as "Siskel & Ebert" and "Ebert & Roeper") will air its last original broadcast the weekend of August 14, 2010.
This was a very difficult decision, especially considering the program's rich history and iconic status within the entertainment industry, but from a business perspective it became clear this weekly, half-hour, broadcast syndication series was no longer sustainable. We gratefully acknowledge the outstanding work of the program's current co-hosts A.O. Scott and Michael Phillips and top-notch production staff, and it is with heartfelt appreciation that we extend very special thanks to the two brilliant, visionary and incomparable critics that started it all, Roger Ebert and the late Gene Siskel.

Ebert tweeted: "RIP At the Movies."

I second that. Not because I'll miss "At the Movies," which I rarely watched these days with it's various co-hosts. But I will always remember and miss those passionate discussions that reminded me why I loved movies so much in the first place.

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