Monday, April 28, 2008

Camera in the Bag

Matt Zoller Seitz, longtime film critic and editor-in-chief of The House Next Door, announced his early retirement from criticism today (he put it more succinctly: "I'm out"), with plans to venture into filmmaking. Movie critics often get razzed for being unable to do what they write about, but in fact several, from Truffaut to Bogdonavich, have made successful forays to the other side of the camera, and Matt, who already has a well-received directorial debut under his belt, has as good a shot as any. Most importantly, with all the hubbub this year of the Great Film Critics' Massacre, with heads rolling in the print media left and right, he's leaving on his own terms. The House -- the best movie blog out there by a mile -- remains in the capable hands of Keith Uhlich and a democracy of remarkable collaborators; but I must respectfully disagree with Matt that it, and we, don't need him anymore. His voice is distinctive -- bullheaded yet fundamentally decent -- and while we've never met and have communicated only by email over a few months, Matt's support for my writing has been invaluable. This blog would not exist without you, kind sir. Many grateful thanks.

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