Roger Ebert may be the greatest film critic of all time. While some out there have their own personal preferences that might differ, there’s no denying the impact that Ebert has made not only for critics, but also for film history in general. He managed to bring a new personality to the world of film reviewing, and managed to become a household name fairly quickly into his career, especially considering he was a small-time film critic working out of Chicago when he began.
Following his unfortunate passing in 2013, Ebert’s mark on cinema is still being felt by both film lovers, and casual moviegoers alike. However, for someone with such a synonymous name in the industry, it might surprise people that Ebert really didn’t have much work actually making movies. He seemed more than content being the guy who watched the movies, rather than the one who made them, but Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (a film he co-wrote) has become popular not only for Ebert’s role in the movie, but also for the unlikely partnership between himself and director Russ Meyer.
A film about the making of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls is currently in the process of being made, with Will Ferrell already attached to play Meyer in the movie, titled Russ & Roger, and it looks like the movie might have finally found their Ebert. According to a new report by THR, actor Josh Gad has reportedly been cast in the movie as the famous movie critic. Michael Winterbottom is directing the film from a screenplay by Chris Cluess.
The movie is said to be a debaucherous comedy about the two men, as they worked to create one of Hollywood’s first X rated movies from a major studio, and how they had a ball of a time doing it. Considering the heightened profile that Meyer gained after making sexploitation films like Wild Gals of the Naked West and Faster Pussycat! Kill Kill!, it’s incredibly intriguing to wonder how he convinced the critic to write a film with him, although it is well-known that Ebert had sent him a letter of admiration prior.
Anyone who has seen Beyond the Valley of the Dolls as well will understand why Russ & Roger might just be an even more interesting film than the comedy it’s being described as. The talent involved is comforting as well, and Gad is an intriguing choice to play Ebert, and it’ll be interesting to see his take on such a well-known public personality.
Russ & Roger is currently in production.
Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.
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