Mike Nichols

Mike Nichols (born Mikhail Igor Peschkowsky; November 6, 1931 – November 19, 2014) was an American film and theatre director, producer, actor and comedian. He was noted for his ability to work across a range of genres and an aptitude for getting the best out of actors regardless of their acting experience. Nichols began his career in the 1950s with the comedy improvisational troupe, The Compass Players, predecessor of The Second City, in Chicago. He then teamed up with his improv partner, Elaine May, to form the comedy duo Nichols and May. Their live improv acts were a hit on Broadway resulting in three albums, with their debut album winning a Grammy Award. After Nichols and May disbanded their act in 1961, Nichols began directing plays. He soon earned a reputation as a skilled Broadway director with a flair for creating innovative productions and the ability to elicit polished performances from actors. His debut Broadway play was Neil Simon's Barefoot in the Park in 1963, with Robert Redford and Elizabeth Ashley. He next directed Luv in 1964 and in 1965 directed another Neil Simon play, The Odd Couple. Nichols received a Tony Award for each of those plays. Nearly five decades later, he won his sixth Tony Award as best director with a revival of Death of a Salesman in 2012. During his career, he directed or produced over twenty-five Broadway plays. In 1966, Warner Brothers invited Nichols to direct his first film, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, starring Elizabeth ...

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Catch-22 (1970)

A bombardier in World War II tries desperately to escape the insanity of the war. However, sometimes insanity is the only sane way to cope with a crazy situation.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Alan Arkin  •  Martin Balsam  •  Richard Benjamin  •  Art Garfunkel

A bombardier in World War II tries desperately to escape the insanity of the war. However, sometimes insanity is the only sane way to cope with a crazy situation.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Alan Arkin  •  Martin Balsam  •  Richard Benjamin  •  Art Garfunkel

Carnal Knowledge (1971)

The concurrent sexual lives of best friends Jonathan and Sandy are presented, those lives which are affected by the sexual mores of the time and their own temperament, especially in relation to the respective women who end up in their lives.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Jack Nicholson  •  Candice Bergen  •  Art Garfunkel  •  Ann-Margret Olsson

The concurrent sexual lives of best friends Jonathan and Sandy are presented, those lives which are affected by the sexual mores of the time and their own temperament, especially in relation to the respective women who end up in their lives.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Jack Nicholson  •  Candice Bergen  •  Art Garfunkel  •  Ann-Margret Olsson

Closer (2004)

Thought provokingCleverDramaticEmotional

Two couples disintegrate when they begin destructive adulterous affairs with each other.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Natalie Portman  •  Jude Law  •  Julia Roberts  •  Clive Owen

Two couples disintegrate when they begin destructive adulterous affairs with each other.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Natalie Portman  •  Jude Law  •  Julia Roberts  •  Clive Owen

Heartburn (1986)

Rachel is a food writer at a New York magazine who meets Washington columnist Mark at a wedding and ends up falling in love with him despite her reservations about marriage. They buy a house, have a daughter, and Rachel thinks they are living happily ever after ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Jack Nicholson  •  Jeff Daniels  •  Maureen Stapleton

Rachel is a food writer at a New York magazine who meets Washington columnist Mark at a wedding and ends up falling in love with him despite her reservations about marriage. They buy a house, have a daughter, and Rachel thinks they are living happily ever after ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Jack Nicholson  •  Jeff Daniels  •  Maureen Stapleton

Regarding Henry (1991)

Respected lawyer, Henry Turner survives a convenience-store shooting only to find he has lost his memory, and has serious speech and mobility issues. After also losing his job—where he no longer 'fits in'—his loving wife and daughter give him all their love and support.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Harrison Ford  •  Annette Bening  •  Michael Haley  •  Bill Nunn

Respected lawyer, Henry Turner survives a convenience-store shooting only to find he has lost his memory, and has serious speech and mobility issues. After also losing his job—where he no longer 'fits in'—his loving wife and daughter give him all their love and support.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Harrison Ford  •  Annette Bening  •  Michael Haley  •  Bill Nunn

Silkwood (1983)

Thought provokingReal

The story of Karen Silkwood, a metallurgy worker at a plutonium processing plant who was purposefully contaminated, psychologically tortured and possibly murdered to prevent her from exposing blatant worker safety violations at the plant.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Kurt Russell  •  Cher  •  Craig T. Nelson

The story of Karen Silkwood, a metallurgy worker at a plutonium processing plant who was purposefully contaminated, psychologically tortured and possibly murdered to prevent her from exposing blatant worker safety violations at the plant.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Kurt Russell  •  Cher  •  Craig T. Nelson

The Birdcage (1996)

FunnyEnjoyableUpliftingCharming

A gay cabaret owner and his drag queen companion agree to put up a false straight front so that their son can introduce them to his fiancé's conservative moralistic parents.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Robin Williams  •  Gene Hackman  •  Nathan Lane  •  Dianne Wiest

A gay cabaret owner and his drag queen companion agree to put up a false straight front so that their son can introduce them to his fiancé's conservative moralistic parents.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Robin Williams  •  Gene Hackman  •  Nathan Lane  •  Dianne Wiest

The Graduate (1967)

ClassicCharmingDramaticSimple

Benjamin, a recent college graduate very worried about his future, finds himself in a love triangle with an older woman and her daughter.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Anne Bancroft  •  Dustin Hoffman  •  Katharine Ross  •  Murray Hamilton

Benjamin, a recent college graduate very worried about his future, finds himself in a love triangle with an older woman and her daughter.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Anne Bancroft  •  Dustin Hoffman  •  Katharine Ross  •  Murray Hamilton

Working Girl (1988)

RomanticFunCuteLighthearted

Tess McGill is an ambitious secretary with a unique approach for climbing the ladder to success. When her classy, but villainous boss breaks a leg skiing, Tess takes over her office, her apartment and even her wardrobe. She creates a deal with a handsome investment ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Melanie Griffith  •  Harrison Ford  •  Sigourney Weaver  •  Alec Baldwin

Tess McGill is an ambitious secretary with a unique approach for climbing the ladder to success. When her classy, but villainous boss breaks a leg skiing, Tess takes over her office, her apartment and even her wardrobe. She creates a deal with a handsome investment ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Melanie Griffith  •  Harrison Ford  •  Sigourney Weaver  •  Alec Baldwin

King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis (1970)

A 1970 American documentary film biography of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., presented in the form of newsreel footage and segments of recordings by Dr. King, framed by celebrity narrators, including Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Ruby Dee, James Earl ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sidney Lumet  •  Joseph L. Mankiewicz
CAST:  Paul Newman  •  Coretta Scott King  •  Joanne Woodward  •  Ralph Abernathy

A 1970 American documentary film biography of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., presented in the form of newsreel footage and segments of recordings by Dr. King, framed by celebrity narrators, including Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Ruby Dee, James Earl ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sidney Lumet  •  Joseph L. Mankiewicz
CAST:  Paul Newman  •  Coretta Scott King  •  Joanne Woodward  •  Ralph Abernathy

Wolf (1994)

Publisher Will Randall becomes a werewolf and has to fight to keep his job.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Jack Nicholson  •  Christopher Plummer  •  James Spader  •  Michelle Pfeiffer

Publisher Will Randall becomes a werewolf and has to fight to keep his job.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Jack Nicholson  •  Christopher Plummer  •  James Spader  •  Michelle Pfeiffer

The Day of the Dolphin (1973)

Dr Jake Terrell, who has been training a pair of dolphins for many years, has had a breakthrough. He has taught his dolphins to speak and understand English, although they do have a limited vocabulary. When the dolphins are stolen, he discovers they're to be used ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  George C. Scott  •  Trish Van Devere  •  Paul Sorvino  •  Fritz Weaver

Dr Jake Terrell, who has been training a pair of dolphins for many years, has had a breakthrough. He has taught his dolphins to speak and understand English, although they do have a limited vocabulary. When the dolphins are stolen, he discovers they're to be used ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  George C. Scott  •  Trish Van Devere  •  Paul Sorvino  •  Fritz Weaver

The Fortune (1975)

Two bumbling hustlers in the 1920s attempt to gain the fortune of an heiress. Nothing will stop them, not even murder.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Stockard Channing  •  Jack Nicholson  •  Warren Beatty  •  Ian Wolfe

Two bumbling hustlers in the 1920s attempt to gain the fortune of an heiress. Nothing will stop them, not even murder.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Stockard Channing  •  Jack Nicholson  •  Warren Beatty  •  Ian Wolfe

Charlie Wilson's War (2007)

SmartCharmingClever

The true story of Texas congressman Charlie Wilson's covert dealings in Afghanistan, where his efforts to assist rebels in their war with the Soviets had some unforeseen and long-reaching effects.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Tom Hanks  •  Philip Seymour Hoffman  •  Julia Roberts  •  Amy Adams

The true story of Texas congressman Charlie Wilson's covert dealings in Afghanistan, where his efforts to assist rebels in their war with the Soviets had some unforeseen and long-reaching effects.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Tom Hanks  •  Philip Seymour Hoffman  •  Julia Roberts  •  Amy Adams

Wit (2001)

A renowned professor is forced to reassess her life when she is diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Emma Thompson  •  Christopher Lloyd  •  Eileen Atkins  •  Audra McDonald

A renowned professor is forced to reassess her life when she is diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Emma Thompson  •  Christopher Lloyd  •  Eileen Atkins  •  Audra McDonald

The Designated Mourner (1997)

Jack and Judy are husband and wife, and Howard is Judys father. They live in some fictional undemocratic and repressive country, and tell us a story about their lives, mostly from Jack's point of view.  (more)

DIRECTION:  David Hare
CAST:  Mike Nichols  •  Miranda Richardson  •  David de Keyser

Jack and Judy are husband and wife, and Howard is Judys father. They live in some fictional undemocratic and repressive country, and tell us a story about their lives, mostly from Jack's point of view.  (more)

DIRECTION:  David Hare
CAST:  Mike Nichols  •  Miranda Richardson  •  David de Keyser

The Fabulous Fifties (1960)

The Fabulous Fifties, CBS, combines style, humor, and imagination. It was rich in touches of quality showmanship and equally rich in the memories of a decade which it revived. In recognition, the Peabody Television Award for entertainment is presented to The ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Norman Jewison  •  Charles Eames  •  Ray Eames
CAST:  Rex Harrison  •  Julie Andrews  •  Elaine May  •  Mike Nichols

The Fabulous Fifties, CBS, combines style, humor, and imagination. It was rich in touches of quality showmanship and equally rich in the memories of a decade which it revived. In recognition, the Peabody Television Award for entertainment is presented to The ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Norman Jewison  •  Charles Eames  •  Ray Eames
CAST:  Rex Harrison  •  Julie Andrews  •  Elaine May  •  Mike Nichols

Biloxi Blues (1988)

SmartAction-packedCleverFun

During the Second World War, Eugene enlists in the US Army during the last year of the War and is sent to basic training in Biloxi Mississippi. There he must live with a variety of fellow soldiers while enduring the whims of a mentally unstable drill sergeant.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Matthew Broderick  •  Christopher Walken  •  Matt Mulhern  •  Corey Parker

During the Second World War, Eugene enlists in the US Army during the last year of the War and is sent to basic training in Biloxi Mississippi. There he must live with a variety of fellow soldiers while enduring the whims of a mentally unstable drill sergeant.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Matthew Broderick  •  Christopher Walken  •  Matt Mulhern  •  Corey Parker

Postcards from the Edge (1990)

FunnyDramaticEmotionalInsightful

Substance-addicted Hollywood actress, Suzanne Vale is on the skids. After a spell at a detox centre her film company insists as a condition of continuing to employ her that she live with her mother, herself once a star and now a champion drinker. Such a set-up is ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Shirley MacLaine  •  Dennis Quaid  •  Gene Hackman

Substance-addicted Hollywood actress, Suzanne Vale is on the skids. After a spell at a detox centre her film company insists as a condition of continuing to employ her that she live with her mother, herself once a star and now a champion drinker. Such a set-up is ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Meryl Streep  •  Shirley MacLaine  •  Dennis Quaid  •  Gene Hackman

What Planet Are You From? (2000)

A highly-evolved planet, whose denizens feel no emotion and reproduce by cloning, plans to take over Earth from the inside by sending an operative, fashioned with a humming, mechanical penis, to impregnate an earthling and stay until the birth. The alien, Harold ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Garry Shandling  •  Annette Bening  •  John Goodman  •  Greg Kinnear

A highly-evolved planet, whose denizens feel no emotion and reproduce by cloning, plans to take over Earth from the inside by sending an operative, fashioned with a humming, mechanical penis, to impregnate an earthling and stay until the birth. The alien, Harold ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Mike Nichols
CAST:  Garry Shandling  •  Annette Bening  •  John Goodman  •  Greg Kinnear
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