July 17 is Illinois Day on the Big Ten Network
July 11, 2008
Chicago, Ill. - The Big Ten Network will present a 24-hour block of University of Illinois programming on Thursday, July 17. Highlighting the day will be a half-hour documentary called "Ebertfest," which celebrates what is becoming a Champaign tradition, Roger Ebert's Overlooked Film Festival, held each April.
The half-hour documentary showcasing the tenth anniversary of this premiere film festival will air at 5:30 p.m. central time. Pulitzer Prize-winning movie critic and Illinois alum Roger Ebert selects films for the annual festival that he feels deserve a second look. Throughout the four-day event, each film is screened at the historic Virginia Theater in downtown Champaign and attended by internationally known actors and directors. This year's festival attendees included Illinois alum and Oscar-winning Director Ang Lee.
Lee said "I'm proud to be a Fighting Illini" while presenting his 2003 film, Hulk. Fresh from "The Sopranos,"Aida Turturro and Joey Pantaliano brought their films Romance and Cigarettes and Canvas to "Ebertfest." Christine Lahti of "Chicago Hope" speaks of seeing her 1987 film Housekeeping again on the big screen. Also, Roger's wife Chaz Ebert, Illinois Chancellor Richard Herman, and University of Illinois President B. Joseph White recall their favorite festival memories and what "Ebertfest" means to the community and Illinois. Alison Davis Wood and Tim Hartin co-produced the show and will provide University of Illinois non-athletic university programming to the Big Network in the coming months.
"Our goal as producers is to create high-quality documentaries that we hope alumni and all Big Ten viewers will find interesting and entertaining," Wood said. "Ebertfest was a natural first choice for the debut of our campus programming. We wanted to pay tribute to Roger Ebert and his incredible contribution to cinema journalism and the Illinois campus."
The Fighting Illini Insider returns as host and Illinois linebacker Brit Miller helps review the golf and tennis seasons, and takes a look at the Illini athletes vying for the Olympics. The day also includes an Illinois Year in Review and a look at Rashard Mendenhall's Journey to the NFL.
Illinois Day Schedule on Big Ten Network (July 17, 2008):
5 a.m. - Big Ten's Greatest Games (Football): Illinois at Michigan (1999)
7 a.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
8 a.m. - Women's Soccer: Florida at Illinois
10 a.m. - Big Ten Friday Night Tailgate: Illinois vs. Wisconsin
11 a.m. - Big Ten's Greatest Games (Men's Basketball): Indiana at Illinois (1987)
1 p.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
1:30 p.m. - Fighting Illini Insider
2 p.m. - Women's Basketball: Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinal (Illinois vs. Ohio State)
4 p.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
4:30 p.m. - Fighting Illini Insider
5 p.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
5:30 p.m. - "Ebertfest"
6 p.m. - Big Ten's Greatest Games (Football): Illinois at Ohio State (2007)
8 p.m. - Rashard Mendenhall's Journey to the NFL
8:30 p.m. - Fighting Illini Insider
9 p.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
9:30 p.m. - Rashard Mendenhall's Journey to the NFL
10 p.m. - Men's Basketball: Big Ten Quarterfinal (Illinois vs. Purdue)
12 a.m. - Illinois Spring Football Game
2 a.m. - Big Ten Tonight: Illinois Year in Review
3 a.m. - Big Ten's Greatest Games (Men's Basketball): Illinois vs. Georgia Tech (1989)