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TOM SHALES TO JOIN EBERT ON FILM BLOG

September 18, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Tom Shales

Tom Shales, the former television critic for the Washington Post, will be joining film critic Roger Ebert on Ebert’s blog, presumably to engage in the kind of interchange about movies that marked Ebert’s years on television with Gene Siskel and Richard Roeper. Ebert wrote on his blog that when Siskel fell ill in 1999, “we needed a substitute on the first shows Gene would miss, and we both immediately agreed on the same man: Tom Shales.” Poynter.com reported on Monday that after Shales took a buyout at the Post in 2006, he continued to work there as a contract writer through 2010. However, in September of that year, he left this message on Washington Post Company Chairman Don Graham’s Facebook page. “I’m over-and-outta here; I’m a-headin’ for the last roundup; Like Webster’s Dictionary, I’m Morocco-bound.” Poynter’s Andrew Beaujon said that when he interviewed Shales a few weeks later, he said the paper had told him they couldn’t “afford” him anymore, that he was “heavily in debt” and that his house was “underwater.” Since then, Beaujon noted, Shales has published a best-selling book on ESPN.