Belfast Telegraph

Friday 31 October 2014

Roger Ebert dies of cancer

Roger Ebert

Pulitzer Prize-winning movie critic Roger Ebert has succumbed to cancer after announcing his “leave of presence” to battle the disease on Wednesday.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning movie critic passed away suffering many complications with the disease since 2002, reported the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper on Thursday.

On Wednesday he announced a break from the industry because of a “painful fracture” which highlighted more cancer and prevented him from walking.

The “leave of presence” was announced on his upbeat blog this week.

"It really stinks that the cancer has returned and that I have spent too many days in the hospital," he wrote to fans. "So on bad days I may write about the vulnerability that accompanies illness. On good days, I may wax ecstatic about a movie so good it transports me beyond illness."

The star hosted film review programmes throughout the Eighties and Nineties but in 2006 thyroid cancer surgery took away use of his jaw meaning he couldn’t speak, eat or drink.

He acknowledged the impact the malady had on his body in his 2011 book titled Life Itself, where he made jokes about his deteriorating form.

“I looked like the thing that jumps out of that guy's intestines in Alien," he quipped in the memoir.

Roger has dated interviewer and media mogul Oprah Winfrey in the past.

Media mogul Oprah claims Roger encouraged her to go into syndication, which has resulted in her lucrative empire.

He married for the first time in 1992, wedding trial attorney Chaz Hammelsmith when he was aged 51.

Chaz, whom he met through mutual friends in 1989, survives him as well as his stepdaughter and two step-grandchildren.

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