The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has joined the awards season fracas today by announcing their nominations for the best screenplays of the year. Their choices are pretty familiar to Oscar prognosticators the world over, and even the biggest wild card nomination - Rian Johnson's sci-fi thriller Looper - was considered a frontrunner for its clever, emotionally driven time travel storyline. Looper is an unlikely contender to actually win any awards (it's probably too "cool") for that, but the gesture of appreciation for Johnson's efforts should warm the hearts of genre film enthusiasts everywhere.
Otherwise, these are likely to be the major contenders for the Academy Awards for Best Original and Adapted Screenplay, although unlike the WGA Awards, the Oscars are allowed to nominate screenplays written by non-Guild members, so other awards season favorites like Beasts of the Southern Wild and Django Unchained could wind up taking the place of less popular screenplays for films like Flight, which we didn't care for much at CraveOnline, or even Looper, which still seems a little "edgy" by Academy standards.
The complete list of WGA Awards nominees for motion picture screenplays are as follows.
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
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
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