A film critic extraordinaire who left his thumb, up or down, on the minds of millions of Americans about films of all kinds, he will also have done much to familiarise them with what a face transformed by surgery after cancer looks like. Just as important, perhaps more so, he demonstrated in his own unique way that his powers of critical analysis and thumb movement skills were untouched and even enhanced.
Question: Has your new face made you wonder afresh about America’s obsession with cosmetic surgery, Botox and the rest?
Ebert: After surgery, I was advised to not attend my own festival because paparazzi might peddle pictures of my new appearance. I said the hell with it. This is how I look. We have to grow comfortable with reality. I quoted a line from Raging Bull: “He ain’t a pretty boy no more.”