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article imageHometown of Roger Ebert to raise money for statue

By Andrew Ellis     Sep 12, 2013 in Entertainment
Champaign - Organizers from late film critic Roger Ebert's hometown of Champaign, Ill., revealed plans on Tuesday September 11 to try and raise $125,000 to build a life-size bronze statue him.
According to the New York Daily News, the statue would greet moviegoers in front of the town's Virginia Theatre. It's the theatre that has been the home of Ebertfest film festival for the past 15 years. Ebert, a Pulitzer Prize recipient and television personality, was raised in nearby Urbana and later went to college at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, according to News-Sentinel.
In an article from The Huffington Post, it states that the sculpture will consist of three movie theater chairs with Ebert sitting in the middle one giving his famous “thumbs up.” The sculpture will be created by artist Rick Harney from Bloomington. Chaz Ebert, Ebert's widow, selected the chosen piece and will work with Harney on the design.
A statement was released with the fundraising campaign that said:
“The sculpture will be a permanent memorial which will honor Ebert for both his career and his dedication to his roots. It will also honor him for his determination to press forward with Ebertfest in the face of huge medical challenges.”
In the same Huffington Post article it said that organizers hoped to have the sculpture ready to be unveiled and dedicated at next year's Ebertfest in April.
Ebert died in April in Chicago after a long battle with cancer. He was 70 years-old.
Not only did Ebert write his nationally syndicated Chicago Sun-Times column, but he also gained fame by hosting a TV show where he reviewed movies with critic Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune.
More about Roger ebert, two thumbs up, ebertfest, Rick harney, Champaign
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