At the Movies (originally Siskel & Ebert & the Movies, and later At the Movies with Ebert and Roeper) was a movie review television program produced by Disney-ABC Domestic Television in which two film critics shared their opinions of newly released films. The program aired under various names. Its original hosts were Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times and WLS-TV and Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune and WBBM-TV. Richard Roeper of the Sun-Times became Ebert's regular partner in 2000 after Siskel died in 1999.
Ebert suspended his appearances in 2006 for treatment of thyroid cancer, with various guest hosts substituting for him. From April to August 2008, Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune cohosted. Starting on September 6, 2008, E! Entertainment Television film critic and reporter Ben Lyons and Sirius Satellite Radio host and former co-host of The Young Turks and current Turner Classic Movies host Ben Mankiewicz took over as hosts. On August 5, 2009, it was announced that Michael Phillips would return to the show along with New York Times film critic A. O. Scott on September 5, 2009.
During its run with Siskel and Ebert as hosts, the series was nominated for Primetime Emmy Awards seven times and also for Outstanding Information Series, the last nomination occurring in 1997. It was widely known for the "thumbs up/thumbs down" review summaries given during Siskel's and Ebert's tenures (this was dropped after Ebert ended his association with the program, as the phrase "Two Thumbs Up" is a trademark held by the Siskel and Ebert families). The show aired in syndication in the United States and on CTV in Canada; the show also aired throughout the week on the cable network ReelzChannel.
The show's cancellation was announced on March 24, 2010, and the last episode was aired on Saturday, August 14, 2010. The following month, Ebert announced a new version of At the Movies, which launched on public television on January 21, 2011. However, the series has been on an indefinite hiatus since December 2011 and unlikely to return, given Ebert's death on April 4, 2013.
In 2002, Ebert was diagnosed with thyroid cancer and underwent radiation treatments fortumors on his thyroid and a salivary gland while continuing to work. Complications led to an emergency operation in 2006, which interrupted his reviewing schedule. (A few reviews written or taped in advance were released shortly afterward.) For the remainder of the 2006–07 season, the show continued with guest hosts during his recuperation.
By October 2006, Ebert had recovered sufficiently to resume writing published reviews on a limited basis; and later was able to make a few public appearances, but due to his difficulty speaking, he did not return to the show. As Ebert’s doctors attempted to reconstruct his jaw bone, his face and neck became increasingly malformed with each subsequent surgery. Television, being a distinctly visual medium, put the producers on edge. They naturally worried that Ebert's resulting disfigurement would produce a decline in viewership, and lower ratings for the show. The show became available online toward the end of 2006, with access to movie reviews on demand. In June 2007, the online program updated its archive, making available all movie reviews since 1986. After the show's cancellation in 2010, the archive, alongside the site, was shut down.