The last film from Mike Nichols was the decent, if forgettable, Charlie Wilson's War in 2007. Before that it was the fantastic 2004 film Closer, which went right along with other Nichols greats such as Carnal Knowledge and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (You'll forgive me if I don't slobber The Graduate like everyone else.)
Nichols' lack of output over the last several years is something that's sorely missed. As much as I enjoyed Roman Polanski's Carnage, I would have loved to have seen what Nichols would have done with the material as he's a director that really knows how to get at the biting edge of humanity and bring it snarling to life on the big screen.
Now The Wrap reports Nichols is finally ready to return to the cinema with a film titled One Last Thing Before I Go for J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot and Paramount Pictures.
The film is an adaptation of Jonathan Tropper's novel of the same name. Here's the description from Amazon:
You don’t have to look very hard at Drew Silver to see that mistakes have been made. His fleeting fame as the drummer for a one-hit wonder rock band is nearly a decade behind him. He lives in the Versailles, an apartment building filled almost exclusively with divorced men like him, and makes a living playing in wedding bands. His ex-wife, Denise, is about to marry a guy Silver can’t quite bring himself to hate. And his Princeton-bound teenage daughter Casey has just confided in him that she's pregnant—because Silver is the one she cares least about letting down.
So when he learns that his heart requires emergency, lifesaving surgery, Silver makes the radical decision to refuse the operation, choosing instead to use what little time he has left to repair his relationship with Casey, become a better man, and live in the moment, even if that moment isn't destined to last very long. As his exasperated family looks on, Silver grapples with the ultimate question of whether or not his own life is worth saving.
With the wedding looming and both Silver and Casey in crisis, this broken family struggles to come together, only to risk damaging each other even more. "One Last Thing Before I Go" is Jonathan Tropper at his funny, insightful, heartbreaking best.
While it doesn't sound like it will have that hard edge I've come to love from Nichols it certainly sounds like it will include the humanity.
Word is he's already reached out to Daniel Craig for the lead role, so it will be interesting to see how this all comes together. I can't wait.
Now, here's a clip from Carnal Knowledge that will hopefully have you running to see it if you haven't already, or watch it again if you have.