Jump to content
 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

NEWS: Mike Nichols has died


Barton_Keyes
 Share

Recommended Posts

Mike Nichols, who won an Oscar for directing THE GRADUATE (1967) has died. He was 83. Nichols also directed WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? (1966), SILKWOOD (1983), THE BIRDCAGE (1996), and many other films.

 

Here's the obituary from the BBC:

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-30129848

Coincidentally, I just mentioned THE GRADUATE in a post on Tuesday.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow! Talk about an all-time great! He was one of only 12 people to achieve legitimate EGOT status (winning an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony during his career). I recently posted in another thread that Meryl Streep's performances in his 2003 HBO miniseries "Angels in America" were among the best things I've ever seen on television.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First, Nichols' filmography from wikipedia:

 

Filmography

1966 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?  1967 The Graduate  1968 Teach Me!     1970 Catch-22     1971 Carnal Knowledge    1973 The Day of the Dolphin    1975 The Fortune     1980 Gilda Live     1983 Silkwood    1986 Heartburn     1988 Biloxi Blues     Working Girl  1 1990 Postcards from the Edge    1991 Regarding Henry     1994 Wolf     1996 The Birdcage    1998 Primary Colors    2000 What Planet Are You From?     2001 Wit     2003 Angels in America     2004 Closer    2007 Charlie Wilson's War

 

A study of which is fascinating- and surprising for its overall shortness and the long gaps in his output.

 

No doubt he starts gangbusters with Virgina Woolf and Graduate- two films which are rare instances of "showy" direction where it works really well (I tend to not be a real fan of "showy" direction) then it's down in the valley with the truly, truly lousy Catch-22, a misfire if ever there was one.

 

I've never seen Carnal Knowledge; I know Day of the Dolphin has a small cult of fans, I'd like to see The Fortune- that one sounds interesting. Clearly the failure of the last title hurt Nichols, who doesn't work again until his triumphant return in Silkwood in 1983.

 

I've never seen Heartburn.

 

Working Girl is fine, but I get that there is a subtext to be critical of.

 

Postcards from the Edge is terrific (Shirley was robbed of a nomination.)

 

...and then something happens where everything else he does (that I've seen) just doesn't come off entirely or positively smells of re-shoots and re-writes- seems to be unfocused or unnecessary- I mean, what the hell were Wolf and Up Close and Personal supposed to be about? The Birdcage is well-acted and funny in moments for sure, but as stage-bound and confined as any 1950's Broadway adaptation. Primary Colors is a mess. What Planet are You From was a MAJOR flop (not seen it though.)

 

Didn't see Wit or Angels. Wasn't "in" to what I saw of Charlie Wilson's War.

 

But hey, no one ever said the creative process was easy (and if they did, they hadn't been in the game for long.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nichols was one of those directors who thankfully refused to be stuck in a particular genre, or have one associated with him, as westerns are with Ford, or "Pink Panther" movies are with Edwards, (or at least off beat comedies), or horror is with Wes Craven.  Nichols succeeded and excelled in many genres, and we're all the beneficiaries of it.

 

My heartfelt condolences to his family, loved ones AND the film industry.

 

Sepiatone

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How terribly sad. I think his films were wonderful. The Birdcage is a go to film for my family when we need a pick-up to our spirits. Brilliant, funny man (his skits that he performed with Elaine May were a riot) Terrible loss, and heartfelt condolences to his family and wonderful wife Diane Sawyer.

 

RIP Mike Nichols, you will be missed by everyone in the artistic community and to your millions of fans.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

First, Nichols' filmography from wikipedia:

 

Filmography

1966 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?  1967 The Graduate  1968 Teach Me!     1970 Catch-22     1971 Carnal Knowledge    1973 The Day of the Dolphin    1975 The Fortune     1980 Gilda Live     1983 Silkwood    1986 Heartburn     1988 Biloxi Blues     Working Girl  1 1990 Postcards from the Edge    1991 Regarding Henry     1994 Wolf     1996 The Birdcage    1998 Primary Colors    2000 What Planet Are You From?     2001 Wit     2003 Angels in America     2004 Closer    2007 Charlie Wilson's War

 

A study of which is fascinating- and surprising for its overall shortness and the long gaps in his output.

 

No doubt he starts gangbusters with Virgina Woolf and Graduate- two films which are rare instances of "showy" direction where it works really well (I tend to not be a real fan of "showy" direction) then it's down in the valley with the truly, truly lousy Catch-22, a misfire if ever there was one.

 

I've never seen Carnal Knowledge; I know Day of the Dolphin has a small cult of fans, I'd like to see The Fortune- that one sounds interesting. Clearly the failure of the last title hurt Nichols, who doesn't work again until his triumphant return in Silkwood in 1983.

 

I've never seen Heartburn.

 

Working Girl is fine, but I get that there is a subtext to be critical of.

 

Postcards from the Edge is terrific (Shirley was robbed of a nomination.)

 

...and then something happens where everything else he does (that I've seen) just doesn't come off entirely or positively smells of re-shoots and re-writes- seems to be unfocused or unnecessary- I mean, what the hell were Wolf and Up Close and Personal supposed to be about? The Birdcage is well-acted and funny in moments for sure, but as stage-bound and confined as any 1950's Broadway adaptation. Primary Colors is a mess. What Planet are You From was a MAJOR flop (not seen it though.)

 

Didn't see Wit or Angels. Wasn't "in" to what I saw of Charlie Wilson's War.

 

But hey, no one ever said the creative process was easy (and if they did, they hadn't been in the game for long.)

 

 

He worked a lot on Broadway directing plays (and musicals) so that would account for the gaps. He was always working......

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mike Nichols, who won an Oscar for directing THE GRADUATE (1967) has died. He was 83. Nichols also directed WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? (1966), SILKWOOD (1983), THE BIRDCAGE (1996), and many other films.

 

Here's the obituary from the BBC:

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-30129848

 

Another great one gone.  RIP :(

 

Behind the scenes of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolfe"  with Mike Nichols.

nichols-taylor-burton-woolf_opt.jpg

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mike Nichols was a brilliant director.  Hard to think of a better example of a leading light in the new age of movies (post 1963).

 

He's been on my list of favorite directors since I first composed it.

 

When I saw 'Angels in America', all I could do was marvel at his craftsmanship.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I doan like any of Mike Nichols' films except for The Graduate but that's mainly because of some shots of Anne Bancroft. :)

Did you see any or all of these?

 

 

Filmography

1966 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?  1967 The Graduate  1968 Teach Me!     1970 Catch-22     1971 Carnal Knowledge    1973 The Day of the Dolphin    1975 The Fortune     1980 Gilda Live     1983 Silkwood    1986 Heartburn     1988 Biloxi Blues     Working Girl  1 1990 Postcards from the Edge    1991 Regarding Henry     1994 Wolf     1996 The Birdcage    1998 Primary Colors    2000 What Planet Are You From?     2001 Wit     2003 Angels in America     2004 Closer    2007 Charlie Wilson's War

 

 

I have to admit my favorite was Angels in America. Wright and Kirk and Pacino and especially Streep were phenomenal, as was the indictment of narrow minded ugly little hypocrites.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

TCM to air 3-film tribute to Nichols on Dec. 6

 

8:00 PM (ET) Who's Afraid of Viginia Woolf? (1966) 10:30 PM (ET) The Graduate (1967) 12:30 AM (ET) Carnal Knowledge (1971)

 

 

A shame they couldn't come up with something they haven't shown many times before.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The last time TCM showed Day of the Dolphin I wanted to send Mike Nichols a fan letter thanking him for making such a devastating movie, not to mention Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and so many others.  He was brilliant.  I hadn't realized about his background, having to leave Nazi Germany as a child. 

 

Truly a major loss.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The last time TCM showed Day of the Dolphin I wanted to send Mike Nichols a fan letter thanking him for making such a devastating movie.

 

That movie really seems to have a real cult following behind it. I've never seen it.

 

Has anyone seen The Fortune (1975)? The wiki entry for it was pretty interesting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That movie really seems to have a real cult following behind it. I've never seen it.

 

Has anyone seen The Fortune (1975)? The wiki entry for it was pretty interesting.

 

No, I've never seen it, but I think TCM has shown it at least once. The film flopped when it came out.......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

TCM to air 3-film tribute to Nichols on Dec. 6

http://www.tcm.com/remembers/

 

8:00 PM (ET) Who's Afraid of Viginia Woolf? (1966) 10:30 PM (ET) The Graduate (1967) 12:30 AM (ET) Carnal Knowledge (1971)

 

 

What are the last two movies pre-empting?

 

I've never heard any Nicholas and May sketches, or if I did they were more than a quarter century ago.  Quite frankly, after seeing Nichols adapt Joseph Heller and Jules Feiffer in the early seventies I seriously wondered if he had any sense of humour at all.   As for Working Girl, 1988 was a particular poor year for best picture nominees.  Clearly it was a year where December releases swamped critical judgement.  I can understand, if not accept, why the Academy didn't nominate Dead Ringers, but nominating this over A Fish Called Wanda is absurd.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What are the last two movies pre-empting?

 

I've never heard any Nicholas and May sketches, or if I did they were more than a quarter century ago.  Quite frankly, after seeing Nichols adapt Joseph Heller and Jules Feiffer in the early seventies I seriously wondered if he had any sense of humour at all.   As for Working Girl, 1988 was a particular poor year for best picture nominees.  Clearly it was a year where December releases swamped critical judgement.  I can understand, if not accept, why the Academy didn't nominate Dead Ringers, but nominating this over A Fish Called Wanda is absurd.

 

The films that are being bumped are "The Naked Spur" (1953) and "The World, the Flesh and the Devil" (1959). What they have in common with "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" are small casts.

 

If you'd like some background on the Nichols and May team, go to YouTube and look for the 1996 American Masters special about them that aired on PBS. It's very informative.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What are the last two movies pre-empting?

 

I've never heard any Nicholas and May sketches, or if I did they were more than a quarter century ago.  Quite frankly, after seeing Nichols adapt Joseph Heller and Jules Feiffer in the early seventies I seriously wondered if he had any sense of humour at all.   As for Working Girl, 1988 was a particular poor year for best picture nominees.  Clearly it was a year where December releases swamped critical judgement.  I can understand, if not accept, why the Academy didn't nominate Dead Ringers, but nominating this over A Fish Called Wanda is absurd.

As for Working Girl, 1988 was a particular poor year for best picture nominees.

 

Yes, but Let The River Run by Carly Simon was the anthem for feminists everywhere. Here's a secret, don't tell anyone, my boss asked me to get him coffee only once. :rolleyes:

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, I've never seen it, but I think TCM has shown it at least once. ( The Fortune) flopped when it came out.......

 

Reading about it on wiki was interesting though. Warren Beatty was trying to get Shampoo made and was finding no takers, so he did The Fortune as a way to get financing, Fortune flopped, Shampoo was one of the top five grossers of the year. It is also the film Nicholson was working on when it was revealed to him via a fact-checking biographer that this "sister" was really his mother and his "mother" was his grandmother (got it?) It was also the film debut of Stockard Channing, although Nichols wanted Bette Midler (he changed his mind after a very unpleasant meeting with her, which backs up some stuff I've heard about her.)

 

It sounds interesting though- one of those nostalgic period pieces that started popping up inb the seventies as an homage to better days of filmmaking: it would be interesting for TCM to spotlight films set in the thirties and forties and fifties that were made in the seventies, eighties and nineties, which range from very successful ( Chinatown, Day of the Locust, American Graffiti, LA Confidential) to disastrous ( At Long Last Love, 1941, The Cotton Club, Mullholland Falls)

 

ps- yes, I know American Graffiti is actually set in the early sixties.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

© 2023 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Settings
×
×
  • Create New...