By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com



Chicago, IL, 2/20/12 — Last Friday the Music Box Theatre, via its social networks, threw down the gauntlet and challenged Roger Ebert, one of the greatest living film critics, to a battle of Oscar guesses.  After a period of what we can only assume was deep and thoughtful consideration, Mr. Ebert publicly accepted our‘foolish’ challenge.

On February 8th, as part of his annual “Outguess Ebert” contest, Mr. Ebert announced his predictions for the 2012 Academy Awards, which take place this Sunday.  The Music Box (and its fans) believe we know better.

From Mr. Ebert’s website: “In self-defense, I will point out that the deadline for my predictions was Feb. 7, with the Oscars more than two weeks away, on Feb. 26. Predicting so far in advance is a handicap, and as a result, you have an excellent chance of outguessing me. Still, this annual contest is fun and provides me with an opportunity to show how badly I can do.”

The Music Box Theatre will solicit the opinions of their over 13,000 Facebook fans and nearly 8,000 Twitter Followers in six categories to help make predictions to outguess Ebert.

So, while the winners of Mr. Ebert’s challenge could win an all-expense paid free trip to L.A. for a film premiere, the gentleman’s bet between the Music Box Staff and Ebert is simple… if the Music Box Theatre wins, Mr. Ebert will offer up signed copies of his books to give away to Music Box patrons… but if we lose, and dark prevails, Mr. Ebert will get to pick a film of his choosing to screen publicly at the Music Box Theatre.

That’s right, if Roger wins, he gets the Music Box for a night.

Here’s how it will work: From Monday, February 20th through Friday, February 24th the Music Box will post a Facebook poll each day, asking the assistance of their fans in making a decision in five categories:  Foreign Language Film, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Actor, & Best Picture—at the end of the workday, the Music Box staff will make a prediction and award prizes to those who participated!

On Sunday night either the Music Box or Mr. Ebert will emerge victorious.  Tune in to the Music Box Theatre Facebook and Twitter feeds for all the fun!


People are encouraged to sign up for the official “Outguess Ebert” contest here:


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“People used to love to call me a maverick, because I had a big mouth, and I’d say, ‘That bum!’ or something like that when I was young. Mainly, because I believed it, and I didn’t know there was anybody’s pain connected to the business. I was so young, I didn’t feel any pain. I just thought, ‘Why don’t they do some exciting, venturesome things? Why are they just sitting there, doing these dull pictures that have already been done many, many times, and calling them exciting? That’s a lie — they’re not exciting. Exciting is an experiment… That reputation keeps with you, through the years. Once the press calls you a maverick, it stays in their files. I’ll be dead five years, and they’ll still be saying, ‘That maverick son-of-a-bitch, he’s off in Colorado, making a movie.’ As if they really cared. You know, in this business, it’s all jealousy. I mean, this is the dumbest business I’ve ever seen in my life. If somebody gets married, they say, ‘It’ll never work.’ If somebody gets divorced, they say, ‘Good. I’ll give you my lawyer.’ If somebody loses a job, everyone will call him — to gloat. They’ll discuss it, they’ll be happy, they’ll have parties. I don’t understand how people that can see each other all the time, and be friends, can be so happy about each other’s demise.”
~ John Cassavetes


“There’s a culture of friendship in Latin American cinema, between people like Alfonso Cuarón, Alejandro González Iñárritu and Guillermo del Toro, which they in turn inherited from others. They’re a sensation of brotherhood, that people care abut you, look after you, which we’ve sought to maintain consciously. That ‘brotherhood’ is the best way to survive, to make better films, but it also a way of coming close to the biggest reason to make films. Filmmaking for me is like a fraternal act, like being with your family, and feeling that what we’re doing, when the film is over and makes some impact, is worth it. That intense encounter with all those people flowers, emanates for ever. You’re a kind of cousin, brother, lover, father, son of all those people with whom you worked. It’s a beautiful sensation.”
Gael García Bernal


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