I’m not a licensed obituary writer, but when news came down that Nora Ephron had passed away following a battle with leukemia, I decided to throw caution to the wind and put a few words down for the writer. The writer/director, most famous for putting the memorable lines into the mouths of Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally…, was 71.
Born in 1941 in New York, Ephron wrote novels, essays, and screenplays over the course of her life. She wrote such films as Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, and Julie & Julia, along with the previously mentioned classic, which for my money is the second greatest romantic comedy ever made (Number 1 is Love, Actually but WHMS is pure brilliance). She also directed eight films, seven of which she wrote herself, which tells me that this lady wanted to do things her way, and good for her that she was able to work her way into the business and accomplish what she did.
She spent her career behind the camera and while the woman was far from unattractive, she quipped that “One of the few advantages to not being beautiful is that one usually gets better-looking as one gets older; I am, in fact, at this very moment gaining my looks.” Her humor was undeniable and it truly did shine through her words both on screen and off.
When asked about success, Ephron once said “Most of us live our lives devoid of cinematic moments.” And if this is indeed true, it would appear that Ephron was one of the few lucky ones to get a chance to not only enjoy a few of those, but was able to create some of those cinematic moments for the rest of us to enjoy.
R.I.P. Nora Ephron (1941-2012)