Mike Nichols Has Achieved Much in His Lifetime, Says AFI

by Bethany Perryman

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Hear ye, hear ye! Variety has reported that Sir Howard Stringer – an actual knight who, when he is not rescuing distressed damsels and fighting what we can only imagine would be rather incendiary dragons, serves as chair of the American Film Institute’s board – announced that director Mike Nichols will receive AFI’s Life Achievement Award in a ceremony next summer. Here’s 7 reasons why we’re not surprised:

1. Nichols was honored at the Kennedy Center a few years back. (Some of our favorite FSR readers were there.)

2. He’s getting old. Like, really old. Keith Richards old.

3. Nichols is is one of only 10 people ever to win the statuette trifecta: Oscar, Tony, and Emmy. (FYI? He’s also won a Grammy. Others that have won all four include (but are not limited to) Whoopi Goldberg, Audrey Hepburn, and Mel Brooks.)

4. I love, love, love Elaine May.

5. His stage productions and movies have run the gamut from profound (Angels in America, Wit) to political (Primary Colors, Charlie Wilson’s War), from goofy (The Birdcage, Catch-22) to game-changers (The Graduate, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?).

6. Last year, when it was Warren Beatty’s turn to get this award, he helped out. Either he got bitchy after the fact, or it was just a matter of time.

7. Oh yeah, he’s one of the greatest directors/producers alive today. A true blue giant of stage and screen.

Nichols said in a Sunday statement, “I am surprised and pleased. The AFI award is truly an honor. I feel very blessed. I was watching The Graduate on my BlackBerry last week,” he added, “and it really holds up.”