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Roger Ebert’s memoir optioned for documentary

Roger Ebert's book 'Life Itself: A Memoir' is heading big screen. MartScorsese Steven Zaillian Steve Jones are behind project.

Roger Ebert's book 'Life Itself: A Memoir' is heading to the big screen. Martin Scorsese, Steven Zaillian and Steve Jones are behind the project.

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Updated: October 9, 2012 3:04PM

Roger Ebert will be trading seats: His 2011 book, Life Itself: A Memoir, has been optioned for the big screen by a team that includes Martin Scorsese, Steven Zaillian and “Hoop Dreams” director Steve James.

The documentary will be produced by Film Rites’ Garrett Basch, with Scorsese and Zaillian (screenwriter for “Schindler’s List) executive producing.

“When I first learned they were interested, the news came out of a clear blue sky,” Ebert wrote in an e-mail. “I once wrote a blog about Steve James’ ‘Hoop Dreams,’ calling it the ‘The Great American Documentary.’ His ‘The Interrupters,’ about volunteers trying to stop street violence in Chicago, is urgent and brave. Now to think of him interested in my memoir is awesome. Zaillian and Scorsese are also brilliant filmmakers. I couldn’t be happier, especially since I never thought of ‘Life Itself’ as a film.”

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