Movie critic Roger Ebert says his movie-review TV program is struggling for survival and will go off the air at the end of this season unless the show finds an "angel," according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“Ebert Presents At the Movies,” which debuted Jan. 21 on public TV stations, has the same format that made Ebert a household name along with the late Gene Siskel: Two critics give a thumbs-up or thumbs-down on new films, the story says.
The show is hosted by Christy Lemire and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, although Ebert, who can no longer speak due to thyroid and salivary gland cancer, has also appeared on many shows, the story says. Ebert produces the program with his wife, Chaz, the piece adds.
In a post on his blog, Ebert wrote, "Usually in television, people use evasive language. Not me. We’ll be gone. I want to be honest about why this is. We can’t afford to finance it any longer."
"Since we went on the air in January 2011, ‘Ebert Presents’ has been almost entirely funded by Chaz and me, plus $25,000 in generous backing from the Kanbar Charitable Trust," he wrote. "We can’t afford to support the show any longer. That’s what it comes down to."