Mike Nichols, the director of The Graduate, The Birdcage, Closer, Working Girl, Charlie Wilson’s War, and many more movies, died last night at the age of 83. Nichols was a creative force to be reckoned with, helming a handful of classic stage productions and becoming one of only twelve people to win the coveted EGOT: an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award.
I watched The Graduate when I was in my teens and stupidly didn’t understand why it was referred to as a classic, but it’s obvious that that particular film left an indelible mark on a lot of people. Steven Spielberg told Deadline:
Mike was a friend, a muse, a mentor, one of America’s all time greatest film and stage directors, and one of the most generous people I have ever known. For me, The Graduate was life altering — both as an experience at the movies as well as a master class about how to stage a scene. Mike had a brilliant cinematic eye and uncanny hearing for keeping scenes ironic and real. Actors never gave him less than their personal best — and then Mike would get from them even more. And in a room full of people, Mike was always the center of gravity. This is a seismic loss.
Rest in peace, Mr. Nichols. You will be missed.
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