Ebertfest passes go on sale Monday


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Another festival is making a comeback this year.

Passes for the 22nd Annual Ebertfest go on sale on Monday, June 7. They cover all of the screenings during the film festival.

The festival showcases celebrated films and other pieces of cinema that have been ‘overlooked’ by audiences, critics, or distributors, a press release says.

After each screening, organizers will also host talks with directors, actors, critics, and more.

This year, it’s moved from general admission to reserved seating and some seats will be blocked off to limit capacity.

Past guests at Eberfest have included directors Ava DuVernay, Norman Lear, Spike Lee, Richard Linklater and Guillermo del Toro, and actors Hugh Dancy, Gina Gershon, Brie Larson, Jason Segel, LaKeith Stansfield and Jennifer Tilly.

Organizers say this year they will be honor young filmmakers from Illinois before features with a red carpet debut of the winning entries of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum’s No Malice short film competition.

Ebertfest runs from Sept. 8-11 at the Virginia Theater. The festival is named after Urbana-native and UIUC grad Roger Ebert, also a Pulitzer Prize winning film critic for the Chicago Times.

Ebert passed away in 2013. He co-founded the fest with his wife, Chaz Ebert, who is the executive producer and host of the event. Nate Kohn is the festival director.

The release says the two select lists that Roger Ebert made over the first 15 years of the festival and others based on established criteria.

Passes are $200. That includes associated ticketing fees, in addition to a contribution of $10 per pass to the Virginia Theatre restoration fund. Discounted passes are available to University of Illinois students for $150, and festival-goers may purchase a four-pack of adjacent seats for $700.

All passes may be purchased through ebertfest.com, thevirginia.org or at the Virginia Theatre box office, 203 W. Park Ave., Champaign, 217-356-9063.

Tickets for individual movies will be available Sept. 1.

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