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HAMMOND Goes Inside The WGA Awards

Pete Hammond

In accepting the Best Original Screenplay award for Inception at Saturday night’s Writers Guild Awards, winner Christopher Nolan addressed the elephant in the room by noting that not all the best screenplays were eligible for the prize. The Writers Guild, as they do every year, disqualified scripts not made under Guild agreements and this year that list included four screenplays that are nominated for Oscars including The King’s Speech, Toy Story 3, Another Year, and Winter’s Bone. Nolan noted that 9 years ago, even though he was a WGA member, he was told his script (later Oscar nominated) Memento would not be eligible for a WGA award. Nolan alluded to those “screenplays not considered but I am not going to name them for fear of boosting their chances at other shows”. He said that, hopefully, next year all scripts will be eligible “without qualification”.

I talked to WGA President John Wells at the pre-show reception about this thorny issue and he said that The Weinstein Company did in fact want to try and make King’s Speech eligible retroactively but that the producers of the film balked at the costs. (Wells’ recent film The Company Men was distributed by TWC.) He said the practice of disqualifying screenplays that don’t meet Guild production standards is one that comes up time and again at WGA Board meetings but the guild feels it’s a good way of convincing some productions to sign on to the … Read More »

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2011 Writers Guild Awards: Christopher Nolan Wins For ‘Inception’, Aaron Sorkin For ‘The Social Network’; ‘Mad Men’, ‘Modern Family’, ’30 Rock’, ‘The Colbert Report’; ‘Boardwalk Empire’, ‘The Pacific’



LOS ANGELES AND NEW YORK (in progress; refresh for updates: Tonight, the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) and the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) are announcing the winners for outstanding achievement in writing for movies, television, and videogames during 2010. Winners are being honored simultaneously at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel-Grand Ballroom in Los Angeles and the AXA Equitable Center in New York City. Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet of Modern Family hosted the West Coast show exec produced by Spike Jones, Jr (again), while The Daily Show With Jon Stewart correspondent Kristen Schaal hosted back east:

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Inception, Written by Christopher Nolan; Warner Bros.

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY 

The Social Network, Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin; Based on the book The Accidental Billionaires by Ben Mezrich; Sony Pictures

Feature films eligible for a Writers Guild Award were exhibited theatrically for at least one week in Los Angeles in 2010 and were written under the WGA’s Minimum Basic Agreement (MBA) or under a bona fide collective bargaining agreement of the Australian Writers Guild, Writers Guild of Canada, Writers Guild of Great Britain, Irish Playwrights & Screenwriters Guild or the New Zealand Writers Guild. Theatrical screenplays produced under the jurisdiction of the WGA or an affiliate Guild must have been submitted for WGA awards consideration.

DRAMA SERIES 

Mad Men, Written by Jonathan Abrahams, Lisa Albert, Keith Huff, Jonathan Igla, Andre Jacquemetton, Maria Jacquemetton, Brett Johnson, Janet Leahy, Erin Levy, Tracy McMillan, Dahvi Waller, Matthew Weiner; AMC

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