Oscar-winning movie director Mike Nichols dies at 83
Mike Nichols, director of The Graduate, Working Girl and Catch-22, and winner of the 1968 best director Oscar, has died at the age of 83.
He was unafraid to approach political issues in his work. His films Primary Colours (1998), Catch-22 (1970), Charlie Wilson’s War (2007) and Silkwood (1983) covered such diverse topics as the absurdity of war, political corruption and lethal nuclear conspiracy. They are now hailed as classics.
Born in Germany, Mike arrived in the United States in 1939. He was artistically ambitious and restless. He won a Golden Globe, a Grammy, four Emmys and nine Tony awards, proving himself capable of mastering multiple artistic genres. His work encompassed comedy and drama and straddled film, TV and theatre.
In his career Mike got the chance to work with the greatest actors of his generation. His first directorial job in 1966 was directing Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Might intimidate lesser mortals. But he went on to win even greater popular and professional acclaim with Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate. Many perceive the ambiguous ending of The Graduate as capturing the dislocated social and artistic mood of late 1960s America.
Though always delighted by his numerous artistic achievements and the thrill of working with fine actors, Mike famously told The Hollywood Reporter (THR) in 2012 that his life really began at the age of 54 when he when he met his fourth wife, Diane Sawyer. They married in 1988. He is survived by four children.