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2020 Chaz & Roger Ebert Symposium

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Oct. 7 2020, Published 8:00 p.m. ET

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The 2020 Chaz & Roger Ebert Symposium will be presented as a virtual series this fall, bringing together filmmakers and scholars to discuss a variety of issues relevant to the media industry.

The series, which is free and open to the public, will premiere on Thursday, October 8, with a panel moderated by Ebertfest co-founder Chaz Ebert and Ebertfest director Nate Kohn. Each event will be broadcast on both the Ebertfest YouTube channel and Facebook page at 5 p.m. CST on their respective dates. See details about each panel below; more information will be added as guests are confirmed.

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The Movie Industry in a Time of Change
The panel will examine the film industry in a time of great change, from the global pandemic wrought by COVID-19 to the protests following the death of George Floyd and concomitant efforts to dismantle systemic racism in the United States.

Documentary Film and Social Change
The panel will examine documentary film including features, community engaged projects, and cell-phone footage as political discourse directed towards social change.

The Ebert Symposium, an annual event that began in 2018 and named in part for the late film critic Roger Ebert, is a collaboration between the College of Media and the Roger Ebert Center. Roger Ebert, who died in 2013, was an Urbana native, journalism alumnus, Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times, and founder of RogerEbert.com. His namesake film festival, known as Ebertfest, is scheduled to return to Champaign-Urbana in September 2021.

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