Posts Tagged ‘Roger Ebert’

Roger Ebert on missing the CWA

February 10, 2011 5 comments

The Conference has been a central part of my life for more than 40 years, and I will miss it terribly. Having lost the gift of speech, I can no longer participate in the ways that gave me such pleasure. The Cinema Interruptus sessions, so named by Howard Higman, taught me much more than I ever taught them.

I am leaving on a high point after bringing together Werner Herzog and Ramin Bahrani last year. Jim Emerson will carry on, and the audience as always will not let a frame pass unnoticed. Forty weeks is ten months, and that’s how long I lived in Boulder. I met so many good people and have so many good memories. Give my regards to Macky and to Daddy Bruce’s. And don’t be surprised if I turn up one year for the concert. I like that outboard aisle seat on the left, about six rows back…

-Roger Ebert


Bill Nack, Literature Gourmand

October 26, 2010 Leave a comment

Conference on World Affairs participant and celebrated sports journalist Bill Nack has devoted a significant portion of his career to following and writing about one very special animal.

Disney’s current release, the feature film Secretariat, starring Diane Lane and John Malcovich, is based on Nack’s biography on the most successful racehorse in history.

Nack’s Secretariat: The Making of a Champion was published in 1975.  Because of the film’s success, the 35 year old book as been making appearances on The New York Times best seller list recently.

Nack is a close, lifelong friend of film critic (and 40 year CWA veteran) Roger Ebert.  Nack admits he was curious to see if Ebert would disclose the friendship in the review of the film.  You can read that for yourself here.

Not only did Ebert review the film, but he followed that piece with a captivating tribute to his friendship with Nack.  Ebert describes introducing Nack to the CWA:

I also proposed him to the Conference on World Affairs at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he is beloved after a decade not only for his readings but for his participation on panels on all sorts of subjects, because at CWA you don’t lecture on your specialty but have conversations, ad lib, about ideas. That format sheds light on the beauty and complexity of Bill’s mind.

Read Roger Ebert’s entertaining tribute to his dear friend Bill Nack here.

Ebert in the Times

September 1, 2010 Leave a comment

Very interesting article on long-time CWA participant Roger Ebert in The New York Times

Roger Ebert: No Longer an Eater, Still a Cook

Roger Ebert Wins Webby Award—Congrats from CWA

Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert has won a Special Achievement Webby Award from the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences.

According to the announcement:

Ebert is being honored for his online journal, a blog which “has raised the bar for the level of poignancy, thoughtfulness and critique one can achieve on the Web, while at the same time shining a light on the most important issues facing journalism,” the academy said. “Roger’s insights – be they in film, online media, journalism or life – and his unparalleled level of engagement with followers and fans – has made the Internet a more thoughtful, engaging and self-aware environment.”

Read the full account on Roger’s award-winning blog.

Congratulations to Roger Ebert who was a 2010 Conference on World Affairs participant. In fact, Ebert has participated at CWA for over 40 years and is best known for his Cinema Interruptus Panel.

Good Stuff Even Between Panels–Ebert’s video of Herzog

April 14, 2010 Leave a comment

As with any conference, some of the most interesting discussions happen between panels. Check out these two videos shot by Roger Ebert as Werner Herzog discusses the film he is working on. Herzog’s film will be a 3-D documentary about recently discovered 32,000 year old cave paintings in the south of France. The cave is Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc, and it is not open to the public.

Roger Ebert Blogs CWA Conference

April 7, 2010 Leave a comment

According to his blog: Roger Ebert thinks CWA is the place to be right now!

Check it out:

Werner Herzog is in Boulder this week, to join another great director, Ramin Bahrani, in viewing “Aguirre” a shot at a time. It is a lifetime experience for a film lover. We’re at the 62nd annual Conference on World Affairs. Maybe 1,000 people crowded into Macky Auditorium, where Bahrani and Herzog sat side by side in the dark, Jim Emerson froze the DVD frames when required, people shouted out questions, and Herzog spoke about the making of the film.
This program was born in 2009. Last year, Bahrani joined us for a “Cinema Interruptus” of his “Chop Shop.” He spoke of film with such respect and love. He is a meticulous director; not a frame is filmed with inattention. He mentioned how much he would love to meet Herzog. An idea was born. This year Ramin and I invited Herzog to join us. Herzog came, and was mesmerizing. I could listen to him all night. —Roger Ebert’s Journal, Chicago Sun-Times Blog, April 5, 2010

Colonel Isaiah “Ike” Wilson Will Keynote

March 19, 2010 Leave a comment

The Conference on World Affairs at the University of Colorado at Boulder is proud to announce the sixty-second annual CWA’s opening keynote speaker: Colonel Isaiah “Ike” Wilson will deliver an address on “Rethinking American Power” at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, April 5 in Macky Auditorium.  Preceding the opening keynote will be the traditional keynote procession into Macky through the CWA’s “avenue of international flags” in Norlin Quad at 11:10 a.m.

A decorated veteran of combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Colonel Wilson currently serves at Westpoint as associate professor of social sciences and director of the undergraduate program in American politics, public policy, and strategic studies.  He has earned a reputation as a versatile and innovative soldier-scholar and is a leading advocate for change in America’s concepts of and approaches to security policy, war, and peace.

Monday, April 5 will also mark the return of Roger Ebert to the Conference on World Affairs. Ebert has participated in the CWA for four decades and has missed only two years of the CWA in that time, in 2007 and 2008, due to illness. He says, “Here I have learned nearly everything I know and contributed even more than that.”

Ebert created one of the Conference’s most distinctive and interactive of sessions, the Cinema Interruptus. Every year a movie is selected and shown in a normal, uninterrupted way. Then, for a total of 8 hours spread over four subsequent afternoons, the movie is dissected on a scene-by-scene basis. Ebert, or anybody else in the audience may direct the projectionist to freeze frame by yelling, “Stop!” in order to make comments about any aspect of the movie: plot points, acting or directing techniques, camera movement, frame composition, and so on.

Aguirre, the Wrath of God pictures

Aguirre, the Wrath of God

Celebrated film director Werner Herzog will be joining the Monday and Tuesday Interruptus, as well as other sessions at this year’s CWA.  Herzog has created over 50 films, including Grizzly Man, Fitzcarraldo, and the recent Encounters at the End of the World, which he dedicated to Ebert.  Werner’s planned participation in the CWA inspired the choice of this year’s Interruptus film, Aguirre, the Wrath of God.

CWA Director and University of Colorado film professor Jim Palmer is excited about Ebert’s choice.  “Filmed near Machu Picchu, this absurd trek through the jungle depicts the madness of colonialism,” Palmer says. “The film is worth seeing for Kinski’s performance alone, it is a marvelous portrayal of megalomania.”

A free, uninterrupted screening of Aguirre will be shown in 35mm on Sunday April 4 at 4 p.m. in Muenzinger Auditorium courtesy of the International Film Series.  That “Uninterruptus” will be without appearances by CWA participants.  The CWA’s Cinema Interruptus will be held each day, Monday, April 5 through Thursday, April 8 at 4 p.m. in Macky Auditorium.  In addition to Herzog, film critic Jim Emerson, director Ramin Bahrani, and writer-comedian Julia Sweeney will also join Ebert at the Interruptus on various days.

All Conference on World Affairs sessions, including the keynote and Cinema Interruptus, are free and open to the public.

The Conference on World Affairs was founded in 1948, originally as a forum on international affairs.  It quickly gained fame in its early years with such notable participants as Eleanor Roosevelt, Arthur Miller and Henry Kissinger. Over the second half of the century, it has expanded to encompass music, literature, environment, science, journalism, visual arts, diplomacy, technology, spirituality, film, politics, business, medicine, human rights and recently has brought such names as Joe Biden, Charles Krauthammer, Paul Krugman and Rachel Maddow to Boulder.

This year’s Conference will be held April 5-9, 2010. A biographical listing of all Conference on World Affairs participants is now online at  The full CWA schedule will be posted to that site by March 22, 2010.