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Nora Ephron, famed filmmaker, dead at 71

Nora Ephron

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Nora Ephron, the screenwriter-turned-director best known for her Oscar-nominated work on “Sleepless in Seattle,” “When Harry Met Sally…” and “Silkwood,” has passed away according to multiple news reports. She was 71.

News broke of Ephron’s illness and impending death pre-emptively, when her close friend Liz Smith posted a farewell letter to the “Julie & Julia” director. The column — which addressed Ephron in the past tense — left many confused as Ephron’s publisher subsequently told The New York Times writer Julie Bosman that she was still alive. However, later in the day it was confirmed that the writer-director has in fact died.

The exact cause of death is as of yet unknown, although friends and family confirmed to ABC News that she had been suffering from leukemia.

Many were surprised to find out about the illness, a fact Smith attributed to Ephron working on “more exotic things.” “People who never dreamed she was ill, are crestfallen. Amazed. Stunned,” she wrote. Deadline also reported that the writer-director-author was ailing, and that she “wanted this to remain a private matter.”

And she did. In the end, fans were less concerned about the way she died and more concerned about the legacy of her work. The three-time Oscar nominee started out as a journalist before gradually making her way into the Hollywood film world in the late 1970s. She broke out onto the movie scene thanks to her script for “When Harry Met Sally…,” and she solidified herself as the queen of romantic comedies with 1993’s “Sleepless in Seattle,” which she wrote and directed. Ephron went on to direct “You’ve Got Mail” and “Bewitched,” with 2009’s “Julie & Julia” being her last film.

Ephron was a regular contributor to the Huffington Post and was recognized for her screenwriting as much as she was for her essays and journalistic work. The world lost a powerful voice when Ephron passed away, but the impact of her legacy will be felt for decades to come.

Share your thoughts and best wishes for Ephron’s family in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.


Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.


Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…


A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.