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Thread: Writer and director Nora Ephron dies at 71

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    Elite Member aabbcc's Avatar
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    Default Writer and director Nora Ephron dies at 71

    The beloved screenwriter, who brought to life award-winning films including "Silkwood," "When Harry Met Sally...," "Sleepless in Seattle," "You've Got Mail" and, most recently "Julie & Julia," belonged to America's top tier of filmmakers, but her talents extended far beyond Hollywood. Ephron was also an accomplished essayist, novelist and reporter, not to mention the Editor-at-Large of The Huffington Post.

    Raised in Beverly Hills, Ephron graduated from Wellesley College before beginning her career as a journalist at the New York Post. She then went on to write about the 1970s women's movement for Esquire.

    "Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady," Ephron told Wellesley's Class of 1996 in a commencement speech. "I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women."

    Ephron had the wit and the guts to follow her own advice.

    "She was the funniest feminist, or pseudofeminist, depending on whom you ask," Ariel Levy observed in a 2009 profile of Ephron published by The New Yorker.

    In her work and in her life, Ephron refused to settle for predictability. "Every 10 years or so there was a moment when I'd say, even subconsciously, 'Is that all there is?'" she told Ladies' Home Journal in 2009. "You've got to find ways to keep it fresh for yourself. To do the thing, as they say, that is a stretch."

    In 1976, Ephron married Washington Post journalist Carl Bernstein (she was previously married to writer Dan Greenburg for nine years) on the heels of his induction into the journalism hall of fame. Bernstein and his fellow reporter Bob Woodward had chased down the Watergate scandal, which ended the presidency of President Richard Nixon.

    "Carl and Nora were the Brad and Jen of the early eighties," Levy wrote.

    Like many power couples, this one ended in divorce - after four years.

    Following her second divorce, Ephron wrote the Academy Award-winning screenplay for "Silkwood," starring Kurt Russell and Meryl Streep. Ephron and Streep would collaborate again on 1986's "Heartburn" and 2009's "Julie & Julia."

    "Directing movies is the best job there is, that's all," Ephron told the UK's Independent in 1993. "I can hardly say a word after that. It's just a great job. I just want to go on making movies, and some of them will be completely meaningless, except, of course, to me."

    Ephron is perhaps best known for her 1989 film, "When Harry Met Sally...," which has become a cultural mainstay.

    "'When Harry Met Sally...' is kind of a dark movie," director Nicolas Stoller told The Huffington Post in 2012. "It's sweet and it ends beautifully and romantic, but those are two pretty messed up characters. They're pretty flawed. They do pretty nasty things to each other. It goes to a dark, pretty real place between them. That's why it's a classic. [Screenwriter] Nora Ephron does not pull her punches in that movie."

    Tom Hanks, who starred in not one, but two now-classic Ephron rom-coms -- "Sleepless in Seattle" (1993) and "You've Got Mail" (1998) - said, "Working on a movie with Nora is kind of like going to a dinner party of hers," Hanks said of Ephron. "There's a lot of great conversation. There's a certain amount of screwing around but, by and large, you wind up talking about what Nora dictates you're going to wind up talking about."

    In recent years, Ephron had grown increasingly aware of her mortality. In her latest book, "I Remember Nothing: And other Reflections" (2010) she writes: "You do get to a certain point in life where you have to realistically, I think, understand that the days are getting shorter, and you can't put things off thinking you'll get to them someday. If you really want to do them, you better do them. There are simply too many people getting sick, and sooner or later you will. So I'm very much a believer in knowing what it is that you love doing so you can do a great deal of it."

    Ephron is survived by her husband, screenwriter Nicholas Pileggi and her two sons, Jacob and Max Bernstein. A memorial has been planned for Thursday, June 28, in New York.

    Nora Ephron Dead: 'When Harry Met Sally' Screenwriter Dies At 71

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    Elite Member Waterslide's Avatar
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    Wow, how sad. RIP

    Nora Ephron Dead; Created When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle : People.com
    Breaking News

    Nora Ephron, Writer-Director of Sleepless in Seattle, Dies at Age 71

    By Mike Fleeman
    Tuesday June 26, 2012 08:10 PM EDT

    Nora Ephron
    Michael Loccisano/Getty






    Nora Ephron, one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood as the creative force behind such blockbusters as You've Got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle and When Harry Met Sally, died at age 71 on Tuesday, according to multiple news reports.

    The cause of death for the three-time Oscar nominee wasn't immediately known. Friends and family had told ABC News she had battled leukemia.

    A writer and director who was as comfortable with romantic comedies as she was with hard-hitting dramas with social themes, Ephron's films featured strong female roles that attracted such A-listers as Meg Ryan, Meryl Streep, Amy Adams and Cher.

    The daughter of playwrights and sister to writers Delia and Amy, Nora was married and divorced to author Dan Greenberg before marrying Watergate investigative reporter Carl Bernstein. She based her searing novel and screenplay Heartburn on the collapse of their marriage.

    She also wrote the screenplays for the drama Silkwood (starring Streep and Cher) about nuclear activist Karen Silkwood, but was best known and reached the highest levels of success with her lighter fare.

    Described both affectionately and sometimes not as "chick flicks," the wildly successful trio of Harry, Sleepless and Mail (co-written with Delia), had Ryan falling in love with Billy Crystal or Tom Hanks and turned the actress into a mega-star.

    Ephron's last film was the time-shifting Julia Child foodie flick Julie & Julia and in 2008 wrote a bestselling novel about aging called I Feel Bad About My Neck.

    She is survived by her third husband, Goodfellas writer Nicholas Pileggi, and her two sons with Bernstein.
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    Elite Member OrangeSlice's Avatar
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    RIP. I love those movies.
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    Elite Member Lily Bleu's Avatar
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    How sad, what a terrific screenwriter, loved and enjoyed all of her films.

    RIP Nora

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    She was the voice of a generation. Truly gifted woman. This makes me very sad.
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    Elite Member Trixie's Avatar
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    This one hits hard for me too. She was truly a groundbreaker. RIP.
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    I didn't even know she had been ill. RIP.
    Did you know that an anagram for "Conscious Uncoupling" is "Iconic Uncool Pus Guns"? - MohandasKGanja

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    I liked most of her movies, except for Julie and Julia.

    If the pic in the article is recent, she looked damn good for 71.
    'I had to get rid of the kid. The cat was allergic.'

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    I read her I Feel Bad About My Neck about a year ago. Some of it was really funny.
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    Syd
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    I was a HUGE fan of hers. Such a loss.

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    What a great life she had. RIP.
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

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    Love her! I want to read that latest book. The older I get the more I think the way she thinks. Sorry sometimes getting older just stinks! She is right, so many get sick, enjoy while we can.

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    RIP and thanks for the laughs and thoughts.

    Just heard she died of pneumonia that was brought on by the treatment for the lukemia.
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    Well, rest in peace. Loved her stuff.
    Life is short. Break the Rules. Forgive Quickly. Kiss Slowly. Love Truly.
    Laugh Uncontrollably. And never regret ANYTHING that makes you smile.

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    The very best of the best.

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