Post image for Roger Ebert to debut prosthetic jaw on new show

Roger Ebert to debut prosthetic jaw on new show

by Shannon Harris on January 21, 2011

Legendary movie critic Roger Ebert is heading back to TV this weekend to debut his new show on PBS. However, things will look a bit different since the last time he was on the small screen, as Ebert, who lost much of his lower jaw to thyroid cancer, will be wearing a new prosthetic jaw, CNN reports.

The longstanding Chicago Sun-Times movie critic was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2002, but was able to continue to review movies on the page, and on television, throughout much of his treatment. In 2006 his condition continued to deteriorate, until surgeons had to remove a large portion of his jaw. The surgery left him unable to speak and eat properly, but two years later he was back reviewing movies, and his new show is a testament to his recovery.

Since the surgery to remove most of his jaw, Ebert has not been shy about his appearance. In March 2010 he was a guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show and discussed his recovery process and new way of speaking. He says that his prosthesis is not to change anybody's perception of what he looks like, and he will likely only wear it on the show.

"That's not to fool anyone, because my appearance is widely known," Ebert wrote on his blog. "It will be used in a medium shot of me working in my office, and will be a pleasant reminder of the person I was for 64 years."

The process of constructing his new jaw took almost two years to complete and was led by Dr. David J. Reisberg. In his blog, Ebert praised the work done by Reisberg and his team, saying they did their "painstaking" job with "love and care." 

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