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Nora Ephron dead at 71

Premiere Of "Julie & Julia" - Inside Arrivals

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Author Nora Ephron attends the "Julie & Julia" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre on July 30, 2009 in New York City.

Nora Ephron, the acclaimed writer behind "When Harry Met Sally" and "Sleepless in Seattle," has died. She was 71. The Washington Post initially reported the news.

The cause was pneumonia brought on by acute myeloid leukemia, her son Jacob Bernstein told the New York Times.

Nicholas Latimer of Alfred A. Knopf confirmed to the Associated Press earlier Tuesday her very ill condition hours after celebrity columnist and friend Liz Smith published what appeared to be a memorial for the writer.

Smith told the Associated Press that she had spoken to Ephron's son Jacob on Tuesday morning and was told that Ephron was dying. She said when she heard that funeral plans had been arranged, she published the column on the website Women on the Web. The post was subsequently removed, creating some confusion on Tuesday.

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