Film critic Roger Ebert's cancer is back

Reviewer says he's cutting back on work while he undergoes treatment

Charles Rex Arbogast/AP

Film critic Roger Ebert, 70, is cutting back on some of his work as the Chicago Sun-Times film critic after announcing the news that he is, once again, being treated for cancer.

“I must slow down now, which is why I’m taking what I like to call ‘a leave of presence,'” the reviewer wrote in his blog Tuesday.

Ebert goes on to write that he will review only the films he wants to review and will also focus on his personal website and Ebert Digital, which will go live on April 9.

The decision comes after doctors discovered what they first thought was a “painful fracture” in his leg was actually cancer. Ebert writes that he is currently receiving radiation treatment and that, in addition to writing about movies, he may write about his health:

“I may write about what it’s like to cope with health challenges and the limitations they can force upon you. It really stinks that the cancer has returned and that I have spent too many days in the hospital. So on bad days I may write about the vulnerability that accompanies illness. On good days, I may wax ecstatic about a movie so good it transports me beyond illness.”

This is the second time Ebert has received cancer treatments. In 2002, he was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. His lower jaw was removed during treatments, which left him unable to talk or eat.

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