Thursday, November 20, 2014

I've Got One Word For You...

Legendary (and the superlative is absolutely applicable here) director Mike Nichols has passed at the age of 83, and his body of work speaks for itself.  He was the man in the chair on some of the most famous films and most treasured Broadway plays over the last 50 years.

Mike Nichols, a gifted director whose film, TV and stage hits such as "The Graduate," "Working Girl" and ''Angels in America" amplified the aspirations and tragic losses of generations, has died. He was 83. 
The Academy Award- and Tony Award-winning director's career spanned more than six decades, and ranged from stand-up comedy with then-partner Elaine May, to Broadway and Hollywood classics of surreal, caustic humor and tortured personal dramas. 
The husband of journalist Diane Sawyer, his death was confirmed by ABC News. 
Nichols won a Tony Award for directing his very first play, "Barefoot in the Park," and would win eight more Tonys for directing "The Odd Couple," "Luv," "Plaza Suite," "The Prisoner of Second Avenue," "The Real Thing," "Monty Python's Spamalot," and the 2012 revival of "Death of a Salesman." He also won for producing the 1977 musical, "Annie." 
He also received an Oscar nomination (one of five throughout his career) for directing his very first film, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" (starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton), and won the Academy Award for his second feature, the Dustin Hoffman classic, "The Graduate."

And yes, as a kid I got to see Annie on Broadway, although I was only 4.  The Graduate is still an amazing movie, and the rest of his film works were by and large the movies I grew up with: Biloxi Blues, Working Girl, The Birdcage, Wolf, and Primary Colors.

Primary Colors in fact was the movie that got me to pay attention to politics as a kid in his early 20s who thought he knew everything already (that and Bulworth).  Clinton's impeachment nonsense broke soon after and the rest made me a Democrat for life.

Here's to you, Mike.


1 comment:

mellowjohn said...

and he was brave enough to try and make a movie out of "Catch-22."

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