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Award-Winning Director Mike Nichols Dies At 83

Chris Pizzello AP
Journalist Diane Sawyer and director Mike Nichols arrive at the AFI Lifetime Achievement Awards honoring Nichols on June 10, 2010, in Culver City, Calif. Nichols died Wednesday at the age of 83.

Award-winning director Mike Nichols has died at the age of 83, ABC News announced in a statement.

"He was a true visionary, winning the highest honors in the arts for his work as a director, writer, producer and comic and was one of a tiny few to win the EGOT-an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony in his lifetime," ABC News President James Goldston said in the statement.

Nichols, who died suddenly Wednesday, is survived by his wife, ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer, and children Daisy, Max and Jenny, and four grandchildren.


NPR's Eric Deggans is reporting on the story for our Newscast unit. He says the director of The Graduate and Death of a Salesman started as a performer, but quickly built a career offstage as one of entertainment's most-honored creative leaders. He says:

"On a movie set or Broadway stage, Mike Nichols excelled at building iconic dramatic scenes. In the 1971 film <i>Carnal Knowledge</i>, he bounced reluctant boyfriend Jack Nicholson off needy lover Ann-Margret. Nichols' skills made instant classics of plays like Neil Simon's <i>The Odd Couple</i> and films such as <i>The Graduate</i> and <i>Silkwood</i>. He started as a performer with actress/writer Elaine May, but Nichols greatest work was as a director. In his long career, he earned Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards. "Still, Nichols said his life didn't really start until meeting his fourth wife, ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer."

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