Director Mike Nichols Dies at 83

Mike Nichols, the director of matchless versatility who brought fierce wit, caustic social commentary and wicked absurdity to such film, TV and stage hits as “The Graduate,” “Angels in America” and “Monty Python’s Spamalot,” has died. He was 83.

The death was confirmed by ABC News President James Goldston on Thursday. Nichols died Wednesday evening. Goldston said the family was holding a small private service this week.

Nichols, who was married to TV journalist Diane Sawyer, also was a groundbreaking comedy performer who teamed with Elaine May as a popular act onstage and television. (AP)

What You Can Learn From the World Series

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I can’t tell you how excited I am that the San Francisco Giants won their third title in the last five years!

This year’s series was amazing from beginning to the very last out. And that was stressful to watch! I actually hid under my pillow for two innings and just listened to the game – when it was still tied.

But once it was over, I realized I actually learned some things:

Be more like MadBum. Unlike rookie pitcher Hunter Strickland who lost his cool during Game 2, veteran Madison Bumgarner is very laid-back. And focused. During the latter part of the series, cameras would show him alone, I’m assuming, focusing on the task at hand. No one talked to him, and why should they? Do you want to be the one who distracts him? He knows what he’s supposed to do – and he mentally prepared for it.

Only after he was handed the MVP award did he say he was “tired.” Before that, he only spoke about his significance in the game during interviews. He said he’d be ready if called to pitch, and that anything can happen during the World Series, and you need to be ready. I fully agree, you only have a few chances to get it right. And that’s it. Win – or lose the championship.

Always be prepared, and on your game, pun fully intended.

It seems that that soft-spoken really won out this year. Aside from an amazing series, MadBum, as he is known, has become an instant media darling. ‘Where did this guy come from?’ seems to be the big question from everyone.

I really can’t tell you if I paid attention to him that much over the past four years. He was hidden behind Tim Lincecum’s spotlight. But maybe sometimes injuries are nature’s little push to get a great leader in place. Colin Kaepernick anyone?

Time rolls on, and someone is always there to take over. When it’s your time, you should be ready. And willing. And respect what happens when decisions are made. Sometimes people above you know what they are doing – and can foresee a positive outcome. Their experience is guiding them about you.

Also, and it’s a cliché, but true – it’s not over until it’s over. So do the best you can until ‘the end.’ Then you can be tired.

(AP Photo)

Nielsen: 23.5 Million Saw Game 7 of World Series

An estimated 23.5 million people watched the San Francisco Giants’ 3-2 win over the Kansas City Royals in Game 7, enabling the matchup to escape the distinction of least-watched World Series.

The Nielsen company says more people watched Wednesday night’s contest than any series game since the 2011 Game 7 between St. Louis and Texas.

It was also 10 million more people than tuned in to any of the previous six games between the Giants and Royals. Overall, the series averaged 13.8 million viewers, second only to the Giants’ four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in 2012 as the series with the lowest viewership. (AP)

Bumgarner, Giants Beat KC 3-2 to Win World Series

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Madison Bumgarner pitched five innings of near-perfect relief and the San Francisco Giants held off the Kansas City Royals 3-2 Wednesday night in Game 7 of the World Series for their third championship in five seasons.

With both starters chased early, this became a matchup of bullpens. And no one stood taller than the 6-foot-5 Bumgarner, who added to his postseason legacy with another dominant performance.

After Gregor Blanco misplayed Alex Gordon’s drive for a single and two-base error, Bumgarner got Salvador Perez to pop foul to third baseman Pablo Sandoval for the final out.

The Giants ended a Series streak that had seen home teams win the last nine Game 7s. San Francisco took this pairing of wild-card teams after earning titles in 2012 and 2010.

Pitching on two days’ rest after his shutout in Game 5, Bumgarner entered in the fifth with a 3-2 lead. After giving up a leadoff single to Omar Infante, he shut down the Royals and earned a save to go with his two wins in the Series. (AP)

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Giants’ Bumgarner Throws Shutout in Game 5

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Madison Bumgarner tossed the first World Series shutout in 11 years, allowing four hits while striking out eight in the San Francisco Giants’ 5-0 win over Kansas City. Bumgarner is the first pitcher to throw a shutout in a World Series game since Florida’s Josh Beckett beat the Yankees to win the 2003 championship. Brandon Crawford had three RBIs and Juan Perez laced a two-run double as the Giants grabbed a three-games-to-two lead in the series.
The television rating for Game 4 between San Francisco and Kansas City dropped to a 6.3, a low for this year’s World Series, then rebounded to a 7.3 in Game 5 as the Giants took a 3-2 lead. San Francisco’s 11-4 win in the fourth game drew 10.7 million viewers on Saturday night. Saturday traditionally is a night when fewer people are watching television. The Giants’ 5-0 victory Sunday was seen by an average of 12.6 million viewers. (AP)

Fashion Designer Oscar de la Renta Dies at 82

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Fashion designer Oscar de la Renta, a favorite of socialites and movie stars alike, has died. He was 82.

The Dominican-born De la Renta — who also lived in Spain and France before coming to New York — was among a group of designers that also included Bill Blass and Geoffrey Beene who helped put the U.S. on the map in the late 1960s as a home of serious fashion.

His specialty was elaborate, embroidered eveningwear. First ladies Laura Bush and Hilary Clinton both wore de la Renta gowns to inaugural balls, and Penelope Cruz and Sandra Bullock wore his work on the red carpet.

De la Renta catered mostly to his socialite friends and neighbors, but eyed more mass appeal with several fragrances and accessories licenses. (AP)

‘Letterman’ Cue Card Man Fired for Colleague Clash

David Letterman’s longtime cue-card holder says he wound up cuing his own firing by getting aggressive with a colleague.

Tony Mendez tells the New York Post (http://bit.ly/ZKEOSD ) in a story published Sunday he lost his job after grabbing a co-worker by the shirt Oct. 9 behind the scenes at CBS’s “Late Show with David Letterman.”

CBS directed an inquiry to Letterman’s production company, Worldwide Pants. A spokesman said Worldwide Pants won’t comment on personnel matters.

Attempts to reach Mendez weren’t immediately successful Sunday.

The 69-year-old Mendez tells the Post he knows he knows he shouldn’t have laid a hand on his colleague. He says Letterman wasn’t apprised of any tensions between the two.

Mendez has become familiar to “Late Show” viewers, appearing in episodes going back to at least 1997.
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Information from: New York Post, http://www.nypost.com (AP)

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