This will be the first year without founder and Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic Roger Ebert, and an emotional time for many involved in the festival. Some sources say that this year’s Ebertfest will be a tribute to the late, great film critic.
Originally, the fest was comically named Roger Ebert’s Overlooked Film Festival. It’s organized by the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, and the films have always been selected by Ebert himself, who was a U of I alumnus. By moving the festival there, Ebert helped save the Virginia Theater.
Ebertfest will present 12 feature films and two short-subject movies, CBS reports. The first film airing will be Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven, a 95-minute film that won an Oscar for best cinematography.
Actors Jack Black and Tilda Swinton are expected to attend, according to CBS. The festival will run until April 21, and the schedule will go as follows:
Wednesday, April 17, 7 p.m.—Days of Heaven and I Remember
Thursday, April 18, 1 p.m.—Vincent: The Life and Death of Vincent Van Gogh and To Music
4 p.m.—In the Family
Friday, April 19, 1 p.m.—Oslo, August 31
4 p.m.—The Ballad of Narayama
Saturday, April 20, 11 a.m.—Blancanieves
5 p.m.—Escape from Tomorrow
9 p.m. The Spectacular Now
Sunday, April 21, 12 p.m.—Not Yet Begun to Fight
Festival passes have sold out, but tickets are available for some individual shows at the Virginia Theatre website.