Nawazuddin Siddiqui remembers Roger Ebert

Last year when Nawazuddin Siddiqui stayed at the IIIinois home of scriptwriter-film critic Roger Ebert, little did he know that the man would be no more within the span of a few months. The Hollywood legend had reviewed Nawaz’s film Patang that did the festival rounds and given it a thumbs-up.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui with Roger Ebert at his house last year
Nawazuddin Siddiqui with Roger Ebert at his house last year

The actor says the sad news of his demise was passed on to him by his brother, who called him in Kolkata today morning. Nawaz has been in the City of Joy to shoot for his next film. Nawaz recalls their first meeting and says, “I stayed in Roger’s home for a week. He had called me to the States to honour me in person for my film. He was a very fine person and he used to keep in touch with me regularly.”

Ebert gifted an autographed books copy
Ebert gifted an autographed copy of his book to Nawaz 

As Roger had been suffering from throat cancer, Nawaz says it was difficult for him to converse on the phone and instead they kept in touch via e-mails. “We discussed cinema a lot and I used to watch the films recommended by him. Citizen Kane was one such film, where Roger had done a voice-over too. His voice had magic. I will always miss discussing cinema with him.”

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