The University of Colorado at Boulder's Conference on World Affairs will pay special tribute to Roger Ebert throughout its week of events April 8-12. Ebert, who referred to Boulder as his "hometown in an alternate universe", was a participant in the annual Conference over four decades.
Conference on World Affairs Director Jim Palmer says, "We here in Boulder are saddened by this news. Roger gave so much to so many in his 40 years at the Conference. He always said he grew up at the CWA, which he referred to as the 'Conference on Everything Conceivable.'"
Ebert wrote about his annual trek to CU-Boulder, "Once we settle into our life's careers, most of us charge the line with our heads down. I have a tendency, for example, to think the world revolves around movies. Once a year at the Conference, I am forced to think on subjects not of my own choosing. I get to talk to people from other worlds."
Ebert, along with CWA founder Howard Higman, created the Cinema Interruptus in 1975. During the four days of the Interruptus, any member of the audience may freeze the film by yelling, "Stop!" in order to make comments or ask questions.
The CWA's annual shot-by-shot film analysis has inspired the commentary tracks for DVDs of Dark City, Casablanca, Floating Weeds and Citizen Kane, which won Variety's Video Premiere award as the best DVD commentary of the year.
Ebert will be recognized at the following CWA sessions this week:
--CWA director Jim Palmer and CU chancellor Phil DiStefano's official welcome at the 11:30 a.m. keynote address by Hedrick Smith ("Who Stole the American Dream?") in Macky Auditorium on Monday, April 8
--Opening of the Ebert Cinema Interruptus on Monday, April 8 at 4 p.m.--brief visual tribute and comments by Interruptus host Terrence McNally
--Recognition at the CWA's Annual Jazz Concert at 8 p.m. in Macky Auditorium on Tuesday, April 9 (no seating available, but will be broadcast on Comcast Boulder channel 63)
--There will be a special surprise honoring Roger's memory as part of the 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 10 New Orleans jam session "Who Dat, Where Y'at?" in Macky Auditorium (TIP for attendees: consider wearing marching and/or dancing shoes to this event)
--At the Howard Higman Memorial Plenary, brothers Dave and Don Grusin will play some music for Ebert as part of their duet. Ebert's lifelong friend and long time CWA participant Bill Nack will offer a brief recitation for Ebert in Macky Auditorium at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, April 10