10 Things You Never Knew about Nora

Happy birthday to the legendary writer/director Nora Ephron!  Today, we celebrate her life and the inspirational work she left behind. Her wit and humorous take on the intricacies of romance have made us laugh and made her a groundbreaker for women in film.  Best known for writing When Harry Met Sally, Nora also had a pretty interesting adolescence and a motivational journey from the newsroom to the movie set. Here's a few fun facts you may not have known about the late and great Nora Ephron. And watch her exclusive MAKERS interviews to hear her story in her own words.


Ten Things You Never Knew about Nora

1.  Nora Ephron was raised by a working mother who co-wrote screenplays with her father. 

2.  Nora's mother worked and demanded that she and her sisters aspire to do the same in an era when most moms were housewives. 

3.  One of Ephron's first stories was called "A Few Words about Breasts" for Esquire Magazine, about the difficulties of growing up with small breasts. 

4.  When she started out in journalism at NewsWeek, Ephron was hired as a "Handmaiden" to assist the all-male writing staff.  

5.  Nora used the experience of her husband's infidelity with their mutual friend and the painful ensuing divorce (during which she was pregnant with their second child) to write her first best-selling novel, Heartburn

6.  She believes the fake orgasm scene in her film When Harry Met Sally is one of the greatest movie scenes of all time. 

7.  She advises aspiring writers to work for a newspaper, because it gives writers the chance to cover and experience different pieces of history. 

8.  Nora was one of the first successful female directors to make box office hits, like When Harry Met Sally, You've Got Mail, and Sleepless in Seattle

9.  In her last year of life, she developed a friendship with Girls writer Lena Dunham, who names Nora as a huge influence and inspiration in her life and career.  Dunham wrote a piece in the New Yorker as a tribute to the writer/director when she died.  

10.  In her honor, the Tribeca Film Festival awards a Nora Ephron Prize for "a woman writer or director with a distinctive voice" every year.