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Home #Hwoodtimes The 2021 Writers Guild Awards–

The 2021 Writers Guild Awards–

by Dr. Laura Wilhelm, LauraWil Intercultural
West Hollywood, CA (The Hollywood Times) 3/22/21 –Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) and Writers Guild of America East (WGAE) announced the winners of the 2021 Writers Guild Awards for outstanding achievement in writing for film, television, new media, news, radio/audio, and promotional categories during a first-time-ever joint, the virtual ceremony taking place on the afternoon of Sunday, March 21st.  Indian-American actor-writer Kal Penn hosted the event.
Penn began his monologue pretending there was a sound problem and quickly went into comedy mode, targeting everything from Quibi to former US President Donald Trump.
He ended on a more serious note, saying, “It was the hard work of those in this union along with the thousands of others in this industry that provided the few real comforts that helped us get through all that.  So tonight is about celebrating that.”
Presenters for the 73rd Annual Writers Guild Awards included Riz Ahmed, Sacha Baron Cohen, Rachel Brosnahan, Sarah Cooper, Andra Day, Daveed Diggs, Ava DuVernay, Jimmy Fallon, Dominique Fishback, Brett Goldstein, Ryan O’Connell, Leslie Odom Jr., Amber Ruffin, Lilly Singh, and Baratunde Thurston.  The show also featured interstitial segments with various writers reflecting upon challenges faced during the past year outside of their writers’ rooms under lockdown.
Judas and the Black Messiah writers Will Berson, Shaka King, and Keith, and Kenny Lucas received this year’s Paul Selvin Award, named for the union’s late general counsel of 25 years.  The Selvin Award is given to the script that best embodies the spirit of the constitutional and civil rights and liberties that are indispensable to the survival of free writers everywhere.
Early award winners included The Great and Ozark in the categories of episodic comedy and drama.  These consistently fine shows are among this reporter’s favorites!  Please see below for a complete list of this year’s winners.

FILM WINNERS

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

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Promising Young Woman.  Written by Emerald Fennell; Focus Features

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

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Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.  Screenplay by Sacha Baron Cohen & Anthony Hines & Dan Swimer & Peter Baynham & Erica Rivinoja & Dan Mazer & Jena Friedman & Lee Kern.  Story by Sacha Baron Cohen & Anthony Hines & Dan Swimer & Nina Pedrad.  Based on Characters Created by Sacha Baron Cohen; Amazon Studios

DOCUMENTARY SCREENPLAY

The Dissident.  Written by Mark Monroe and Bryan Fogel; Briarcliff Entertainment

TELEVISION AND NEW MEDIA WINNERS

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DRAMA SERIES

The Crown.  Written by Peter Morgan and Jonathan Wilson; Netflix

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COMEDY SERIES

Ted Lasso.  Written by Jane Becker, Leann Bowen, Brett Goldstein, Brendan Hunt, Joe Kelly, Bill Lawrence, Jamie Lee, Jason Sudeikis, Phoebe Walsh, Bill Wrubel; Apple TV+

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NEW SERIES

Ted Lasso.  Written by Jane Becker, Leann Bowen, Brett Goldstein, Brendan Hunt, Joe Kelly, Bill Lawrence, Jamie Lee, Jason Sudeikis, Phoebe Walsh, Bill Wrubel; Apple TV+

ORIGINAL LONG FORM

Mrs. America.  Written by Tanya Barfield, Joshua Griffith, Sharon Hoffman, Boo Killebrew, Micah Schraft, April Shih, Dahvi Waller; FX Networks

ADAPTED LONG FORM

The Queen’s Gambit.  Written by Scott Frank and Allan Scott, Based on the novel by Walter Tevis; Netflix

ORIGINAL & ADAPTED SHORT FORM NEW MEDIA

#FREERAYSHAWN.  Written by Marc Maurino; Quibi

ANIMATION

“Xerox of a Xerox” (BoJack Horseman).  Written by Nick Adams; Netflix

EPISODIC DRAMA

“Fire Pink” (Ozark).  Written by Miki Johnson; Netflix

EPISODIC COMEDY

“The Great” (The Great).  Written by Tony McNamara; Hulu

COMEDY/VARIETY TALK SERIES

Desus & Mero.  Writers: Daniel “Desus Nice” Baker, Claire Friedman, Ziwe Fumudoh, Josh Gondelman, Robert Kornhauser, Joel “The Kid Mero” Martinez, Heben Nigatu, Mike Pielocik, Julia Young; Showtime

COMEDY/VARIETY SPECIALS

Stephen Colbert’s Election Night 2020: Democracy’s Last Stand: Building Back America Great Again Better 2020.  Head Writers: Ariel Dumas, Jay Katsir Writers: Delmonte Bent, Michael Brumm, River Clegg, Aaron Cohen, Stephen T. Colbert, Nicole Conlan, Paul Dinello, Glenn Eichler, Django Gold, Gabe Gronli, Barry Julien, Michael Cruz Kayne, Eliana Kwartler, Matt Lappin, Felipe Torres Medina, Opus Moreschi, Asher Perlman, Tom Purcell, Kate Sidley, Brian Stack, John Thibodeaux, Steve Waltien; Showtime

COMEDY/VARIETY SKETCH SERIES

At Home with Amy Sedaris.  Writers: Jeremy Beiler, Cole Escola, Peter Grosz, Amy Sedaris; truTV

QUIZ AND AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION

Weakest Link.  Head Writer: Ann Slichter Writers: Chip Dornell, Paul Greenberg, Joyce Ikemi, Stuart Krasnow, Jon Macks, Mona Mira, Scott Saltzburg, Aaron Solomon, Chris Sturgeon, Grant Taylor; NBC

DAYTIME DRAMA

Days of Our Lives.  Head Writer: Ron Carlivati Writers: Lorraine Broderick, Joanna Cohen, Carolyn Culliton, Richard Culliton, Rick Draughon, David Kreizman, Rebecca McCarty, Ryan Quan, Dave Ryan, Katherine D. Schock, Elizabeth Snyder; NBC

CHILDREN’S EPISODIC, LONG FORM AND SPECIALS

“The Sleepover.”  Written by Sarah Rothschild; Netflix

DOCUMENTARY SCRIPT – CURRENT EVENTS

“Agents of Chaos, Part I.”  Written by Alex Gibney & Michael J. Palmer; HBO Documentary Films

DOCUMENTARY SCRIPT – OTHER THAN CURRENT EVENTS

“Opioids, Inc” (Frontline).  Written by Tom Jennings; PBS

NEWS SCRIPT – REGULARLY SCHEDULED, BULLETIN, OR BREAKING REPORT

“Anger in America” (World News Tonight with David Muir).  Written by Dave Bloch, David Muir, Karen Mooney, David Schoetz; ABC News

NEWS SCRIPT – ANALYSIS, FEATURE, OR COMMENTARY

“Juneteenth: A Celebration of Overcoming.”  Written by Dave Bloch; ABC News

DIGITAL NEWS

“The Store That Called the Cops on George Floyd.”  Written by Aymann Ismail; Slate.com

RADIO/AUDIO WINNERS

RADIO/AUDIO NEWS SCRIPT– REGULARLY SCHEDULED, BULLETIN, OR BREAKING REPORT

“Changemakers: Leaders Who Made a Difference.”  Written by Gail Lee; CBS News Radio

RADIO/AUDIO NEWS SCRIPT – ANALYSIS, FEATURE, OR COMMENTARY

“Against Those Thugs: Delores Tucker and Bill Bennett” (Slow Burn).  Written by Joel Anderson, Christopher Johnson; Slate Podcasts

PROMOTIONAL WINNER

ON-AIR PROMOTION

“Get Out The Vote – Check Out Those Moves.”  Written by Meghana Reddy and Angad Bhalla; Facebook, Instagram, YouTube