Whoopi Goldberg Breaks Down Sobbing Over Director Mike Nichols’ Death

by Jackie Willis 12:40 PM PST, November 20, 2014
Playing Whoopi Goldberg Breaks Down Sobbing Over Director Mike Nichols’ Death

The sudden death of renowned director Mike Nichols is being felt immensely in Hollywood.

Nichols, whose many accolades include The Graduate, Working Girl, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Closer, Charlie Wilson's War, Annie, Spamalot and The Birdcage, passed away at age 83 on Wednesday.

The award-winning director/producer is credited with launching Whoopi Goldberg's career when he brought her one-woman show to Broadway. On Thursday's The View, Goldberg broke down in sobs as she attempted to pay tribute to Nichols. Unable to speak, her co-host Nicolle Wallace chimed in, "This man meant the world to her."

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Photo: ABC

The show then flashed back to when the director appeared on the program in 2012 and Goldberg was able to thank her mentor for all he'd done for her. "Whenever I'm with you, I know I'm okay," she said to Nichols at the time, getting teary-eyed during the interview.

Goldberg is just one of many stars mourning the death of Nichols. Actor John Goodman, who starred in the director's What Planet Are You From? and the off-Broadway play The Seagull, shared his memories of Nichols with ET, saying, "He made me feel as though I were a full partner or co-conspirator in finding clues to solve the puzzle; like a really slow Dr. Watson. It's hard to imagine a world without him."

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Oscar winner Meryl Streep, who worked on such films as Silkwood, Heartburn and Angels in America said of the director (via People), "An inspiration and joy to know, a director who cried when he laughed, a friend without whom, well, we can't imagine our world, an indelible irreplaceable man."

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Photo: Getty Images

Tom Hanks, who starred in Nichols' last film, 2007's Charlie Wilson's War, also reacted to news of his death, saying (via People), "'Forward. We must always move forward. Otherwise what will become of us?' said Mike Nichols, who changed the lives of those who knew him, who loved him, who will miss him so."

Nichols is survived by his wife Diane Sawyer, three children and grandchildren.

Meanwhile, Twitter exploded with heart-wrenching comments and condolences in reaction to Nichols' death. Here are few of those tweets:

Goldberg also lost her dear friend Robin Williams this year. ET looks back at her, Williams and Billy Crystal's close friendship.