The Graduate director Mike Nichols was an all-rounder entertainer

Film director Mike Nichols poses in Paris, during a photocall for his new movie Charlie Wilson's War in France on Jan 11, 2008. -- PHOTO: AFP
Film director Mike Nichols poses in Paris, during a photocall for his new movie Charlie Wilson's War in France on Jan 11, 2008. -- PHOTO: AFP

Berlin-born American director Mike Nichols is part of a very select group of creatives who have won awards across the entertainment spectrum. Namely, he has won Emmys for TV dramas, a Grammy for a recording, Tonys for his stage productions and an Oscar for his best-known film, The Graduate. He died on Nov 19 at the age of 83 from a heart attack.

Here are some of his award-winning works.


Grammy

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Best Comedy Album for An Evening With Mike Nichols And Elaine May (1961).

Nichols was performing comedy in Chicago with May, a member of the Compass Players improv troupe. This led to the formation of the comedy duo Nichols and May in 1958. They performed at nightclubs, on radio, on TV and also on stage. The winning album is a recording of their 1960 Broadway show of the same name.

Tony

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Six awards for Best Direction of a Play including for Barefoot In The Park (1963), The Real Thing (1984) and Death Of A Salesman (2012) and one for Best Direction of a Musical for Spamalot (2005).

The Nichols and May comedy duo split up in 1961 and he went into theatre. He was picked to direct Neil Simon's romantic comedy Barefoot In The Park, which starred a young Robert Redford. The play was a big hit on Broadway and ran for 1,530 performances.

Nichols carved out a successful career on stage and was once hailed by Time magazine as "the most in-demand director in the American theatre".

Oscar

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Best Director for The Graduate (1967)

With theatrical success, the film studios came a-knocking. His debut film, Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? (1966) racked up 13 Oscar nominations, including his first for Best Director. He successfully took home the award with his second nomination.

The Graduate launched the career of Dustin Hoffman, who played the titular aimless graduate who is seduced by an older woman. It was the highest grossing film of 1967 and is also regarded as a cultural touchstone.

His diverse body of work in film includes whistleblower drama Silkwood (1983), romantic comedy-drama Working Girl (1988), cross-dressing comedy The Birdcage (1996), political drama Primary Colors (1998) and lacerating relationship drama Closer (2004).

Emmy

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Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special for Wit (2001) and Angels In America (2003)

Wit was an adaptation of Margaret Edson's 1999 Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name. Emma Thompson shaved her head to play an English literature professor diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Angels In America was adapted from Tony Kushner's acclaimed play of the same name about the AIDS epidemic. Its top-draw cast included Al Pacino, Meryl Streep and Thompson as an angel.