Writers Guild Of America

For the films of 2012
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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby Mister Tee » Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:47 pm

dws1982 wrote:
OscarGuy wrote:If there's a group that will determine is of "Literary" quality, it's the USC Scripter awards. They aren't the greatest Oscar predictors, but if Life of Pi can grab a nod there, I'd be more likely to feel it safer as an Oscar nominee.

Unfortunately (for Oscar prediction purposes) they announce their five nominees after the Oscar nominations come out.

I think there's significant downside to the extremely early nominations announcement this year -- mainly, I think the compressed time-frame almost assures the nominees will come from a limited field of the most heavily promoted/praised, as there won't be time for voters to make off-the-beaten-track discoveries.

But...on the sunny side: with precursors like Scripter and ACE not even making their nominations known till after AMPAS, and with other major forecasters appearing only days/hours before the Oscar nods (and post-ballot deadlines), the Oscar nods might feel for the first time in a while like they came from the voters themselves, and weren't just a lightly-adjusted amalgam of other lists issued in the month previous.

And I, for one, am hoping that, on the night of the 10th, the Broadcasters blush with shame as they give an award to someone who failed to receive an Oscar nod that very morning, undermining the BFCA's entire raison d'etre.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby dws1982 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:23 pm

OscarGuy wrote:If there's a group that will determine is of "Literary" quality, it's the USC Scripter awards. They aren't the greatest Oscar predictors, but if Life of Pi can grab a nod there, I'd be more likely to feel it safer as an Oscar nominee.

Unfortunately (for Oscar prediction purposes) they announce their five nominees after the Oscar nominations come out.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby OscarGuy » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:05 pm

If there's a group that will determine is of "Literary" quality, it's the USC Scripter awards. They aren't the greatest Oscar predictors, but if Life of Pi can grab a nod there, I'd be more likely to feel it safer as an Oscar nominee.
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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby The Original BJ » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:24 pm

The reason I think Life of Pi is pretty safe in the screenplay category (even though those bookend sequences were indeed pretty clunky) is the fact that it's a very solid candidate for a Best Picture nomination (though, for some reason, a lot of people seem to be doubting this now too, which I don't understand) AND has an award-winning novel as its basis. Which is to say, the movie has a literary pedigree that other more visually spectacular movies (like Avatar) did not. I'd be pretty surprised if one of the more on-the-bubble candidates knocked it out of contention.

I think what will end up hurting Perks is that it's so teen-centric. Quality-wise, it's BETTER than a lot of so-called teen movies, and doesn't necessarily deserve to be lumped with them, but I feel like the Academy may be a bit more resistant to something so YA.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby dws1982 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:08 pm

Sonic Youth wrote:(I'm still worried there's no way Ang Lee's adaptation can be better than the adaptation playing in my head.)

The adaptation playing in your head is almost certainly better.

Sonic Youth wrote:I would argue that Wallflower ISN'T more in line with the Academy's way of thinking, since the movies that tend to not carry over from WGA to AMPAS are light, indie comedies.

I can see your point, but I would argue that Wallflower isn't a comedy. Certainly it has comedic elements, but the part that sticks out the most to me is the sudden left turn it makes near the end.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby Sonic Youth » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:52 am

The animals are why it was considered unfilmable. There's nothing else in the book that seemed all too challenging to adapt. That said, I'm sure it's getting nominated. (I haven't seen it. I'm still worried there's no way Ang Lee's adaptation can be better than the adaptation playing in my head.)

I would argue that Wallflower ISN'T more in line with the Academy's way of thinking, since the movies that tend to not carry over from WGA to AMPAS are light, indie comedies.
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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby anonymous1980 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 10:01 pm

The Original BJ wrote: The other four seem pretty safe, to me.


I think Life of Pi is not that big of a lock since the screenplay is one of the most criticized elements of the film but then again writers might appreciate the fact that David Magee managed to get a workable screenplay out of what people regard as an unfilmable book.

As for Perks, I would also add that the lead character in the movie is an aspiring writer so that may resonate more on members of the writer's branch.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby OscarGuy » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:30 pm

If history tells us anything, a film like The Perks of Being a Wallflower is more in line with the Academy's Writers branch trends than Beasts of the Southern Wild. And for the same reason rolo cites for keeping Les Mis out of the competition, I think Beasts could suffer the same. The film has very little dialogue and while we've established dialogue isn't everything, sometimes the snappier dialogue is more well received. For that matter, I think Life of Pi could also be vulnerable and I might consider dumping it before Perks.

On the Original side, Flight is out. I just can't imagine them avoiding Tarantino's film. I also think Looper's shakier than The master only because the Academy hasn't always loved sci-fi. I think Amour may struggle here. We keep assuming the film is universally loved, but I heard second-hand that the Foreign Lingo committee had to use its "rescue" on Amour to keep it in the competition, meaning the general membership who voted didn't think it was one of the best of the year. And considering how sappy the foreign language voters tend to be, I think that's indicative of something greater. Of course, i still think Amour will make it in to Original Screenplay, but I have a hard time justifying removing Looper to fit both Amour and Django in.
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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby The Original BJ » Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:57 pm

The precursors seem to be in even more lock-step agreement than usual this year. I'd predicted 9/10 of these nominees, thinking The Sessions had a better shot than Perks of Being a Wallflower. (Though, on that note -- I'm thrilled for Steve Chbosky. His wife is a friend of mine, and I've gotten to know him a little recently, and got to attend some of the Perks opening festivities last fall. It's amazing how steadfastly he held on to the movie rights to his novel for a good decade and a half, until he had enough clout to be able to direct the film version himself. Really nice guy, too.)

I think the Original Screenplay lineup could still be a bit more malleable than the five most are predicting (i.e. the ones rolo cites.) I think Amour definitely has a shot, but I think many are underestimating just how difficult that movie might be for the Academy -- it's much less user-friendly than, say, A Separation, I feel. I also still think The Master could be vulnerable, simply because its script is its most oft-criticized element (or, to be nicer about it, the least-praised aspect of the movie.) All of which is to say, I'm not totally counting out Flight or Looper, both of which were solid box office hits.

In Adapted Screenplay, I'd say Perks gets knocked out for Beasts of the Southern Wild -- it may not have been eligible here, but that PGA nod suggests that it does have a certain level of industry support, and screenplay seems like the best place for it to appear. The other four seem pretty safe, to me.

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Re: Writers Guild Of America

Postby rolotomasi99 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:22 pm

In Original, replace FLIGHT and LOOPER with AMOUR and DJANGO UNCHAINED, and you have your Oscar nominees. In Adapted, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD could replace THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER (which tears me up since I loved both). While I think LES MISERABLES is going to do very well with the Academy, I doubt the writers branch is going to nominate a screenplay made-up entirely of previously written songs. I cannot think of any other possibilities in the Adapted category.
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Writers Guild Of America

Postby rolotomasi99 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:16 pm

Via AwardsDaily.

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Flight, Written by John Gatins; Paramount Pictures
Looper, Written by Rian Johnson; TriStar Pictures
The Master, Written by Paul Thomas Anderson; The Weinstein Company
Moonrise Kingdom, Written by Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola; Focus Features
Zero Dark Thirty, Written by Mark Boal; Columbia Pictures

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Argo, Screenplay by Chris Terrio; Based on a selection from The Master of Disguise by Antonio J. Mendez and the Wired Magazine article “The Great Escape” by Joshuah Bearman; Warner Bros. Pictures
Life of Pi, Screenplay by David Magee; Based on the novel by Yann Martel; 20th Century Fox
Lincoln, Screenplay by Tony Kushner; Based in part on the book Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin; DreamWorks Pictures
The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Screenplay by Stephen Chbosky; Based on his book; Summit Entertainment
Silver Linings Playbook, Screenplay by David O. Russell; Based on the novel by Matthew Quick; The Weinstein Company

DOCUMENTARY SCREENPLAY

The Central Park Five, Written by Sarah Burns and David McMahon and Ken Burns; Sundance Selects
The Invisible War, Written by Kirby Dick; Cinedigm Entertainment Group
Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God, Written by Alex Gibney; HBO Documentary Films
Searching for Sugar Man, Written by Malik Bendejelloul; Sony Pictures Classics
We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, Written by Brian Knappenberger; Cinetic Media
West of Memphis, Written by Amy Berg & Billy McMillin; Sony Pictures Classics
"When it comes to the subject of torture, I trust a woman who was married to James Cameron for three years."
-- Amy Poehler in praise of Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow


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