04/05/2013 12:15 pm ET

Harvey Weinstein On Roger Ebert: 'A Champion Of Cinema'

Harvey Weinstein took a moment to reflect on film critic Roger Ebert's passing on Thursday. In a statement to the Huffington Post, Weinstein said appreciated Ebert as a "champion of cinema."

“Roger Ebert was a passionate critic who understood that he needed to not only appraise films but be a champion of cinema," Weinstein said. "He was always on the side of movies that needed that extra push. The only thing that tops him as a writer was his kindness as a human being. I will miss Roger very much and my heart goes out to Chaz and the entire family. “

Barack Obama also released a statement on Ebert's death, describing the late writer as the definition of movies:

Michelle and I are saddened to hear about the passing of Roger Ebert. For a generation of Americans - and especially Chicagoans - Roger was the movies. When he didn't like a film, he was honest; when he did, he was effusive - capturing the unique power of the movies to take us somewhere magical. Even amidst his own battles with cancer, Roger was as productive as he was resilient - continuing to share his passion and perspective with the world. The movies won't be the same without Roger, and our thoughts and prayers are with Chaz and the rest of the Ebert family.

A number of Ebert's Chicago peers and fans took to Twitter to post their reactions to the horrible news. We've collected a sampling in the gallery below.