Award-Winning Director Mike Nichols Dies At 83

November 20, 2014

Updated at 8:40 a.m.

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, his 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 Carnal Knowledge, he bounced reluctant boyfriend Jack Nicholson off needy lover Ann-Margret.

“Nichols’ skills made instant classics of plays like Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple and films such as The Graduate and Silkwood. 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.”

NPR spoke to Nichols in 2012. You can listen to those interviews below.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.