Entertainment behind the scenes
Who knew Dwight Kurt Schrute III could sell paper and tweet with Internet wit and humor, too?
At the Toronto International Film Festival’s Filmmaker’s Lounge on Saturday, Rainn Wilson (Dwight Schrute of “The Office”) out-tweeted four other film industry panelists — hard-core tweeters all — in a “Twitter Showdown” hosted by MTV’s Dan Levy.
Each panelist had 60 seconds to “tweet” something witty and original about Roger Ebert’s statements about the film industry. In 140 characters or less.
Wilson was up against David Poland (@DavidPoland), a critic with Movie City News, Eric Kohn, a critic with indieWIRE and Screenrush, Grace Wang (@etherielmusings), TIFF social media coordinator, and Scott Tobias, a critic with The Onion’s AV Club.
The latest movies from Sylvester Stallone, Julia Roberts and Michael Cera will forever be remembered by film buffs as the last to be reviewed on the weekly TV show “At the Movies,” which ended its influential 35-year run this past weekend. Syndicator Disney announced in March that it was canceling the show because it no longer made financial sense to produce.
The show, originated by rival Chicago newspapermen Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert, brought film criticism to mainstream America. The two scribes passionately debated each other on the merits of Hollywood blockbusters and small art-house releases, making or breaking movies with their trademarked (literally) thumbs-up and thumbs-down recommendations.
No doubt a lot of things have been lost in the city of Cannes on the French Riviera. but during the annual film festival here, we thought this one was noteworthy. (Especially since this year’s gathering has been rather lackluster. Read about that here).
On cafe tables in an industry pavilion at the annual gathering of filmmakers, critics and fans, this notice appeared on Monday: “REWARD for the return of Roger Ebert’s Macbook Pro.” Ebert, of course, is the award-winning film critic, so what resides on that hard drive might read like an encyclopedia (although Ebert’s writing has always been more lively than an encyclopedia) of film and film review. His website is here. One can only imagine its value to the critic, and to movie fans.
Many of the movies entering theaters in the next few weeks may be forgettable afterthoughts unfurled on the post-summer masses, but at least some of the reviews promise to be memorable now that a pair of veteran critics are back at the helm of the influential TV show “At the Movies.”
The series, a descendant of the longtime vehicle for Roger Ebert and the late Gene Siskel, relaunched at the weekend with familiar faces Michael Phillips (right) of the Chicago Tribune and A.O. (Tony) Scott of the New York Times.