Angels in America, Cavedweller, Wonderfalls, Bruce Vilanch among WGA nominees
NBC's The West Wing and HBO's Sex and the City bagged two nods apiece in the 57th annual Writers Guild Awards as nominees were announced Wednesday. The WGAs, administered by its West and East Coast branches, cover TV and radio programs broadcast between December 1, 2003, and November 30, 2004. Nominees for feature film categories--which are usually a harbinger of screenwriting nominees in the annual Academy Awards derby--will be unveiled January 13. Winners will be revealed February 19 during ceremonies held simultaneously in Los Angeles and New York.
West Wing earned mentions in the WGA's Episodic Drama category for airings of "Memorial Day," penned by John Sacret Young and Josh Singer, and "The Supremes," written by Debora Cahn. HBO's Six Feet Under was nominated for the episode "Falling Into Place," written by Craig Wright, while HBO's The Sopranos was nominated for the episode "Long Term Parking," penned by Terence Winter. In the Episodic Comedy field, Sex and the City earned mentions for "Splat!" written by Jenny Bicks and Cindy Chupack, and "The Ick Factor," written by Julie Rottenberg and Elisa Zuritsky. Fox's Emmy-winning Arrested Development earned a nomination for the episode "Pier Pressure," from writers Jim Vallely and series creator-executive producer Mitch Hurwitz. The pilot of the now canceled Fox dramedy Wonderfalls, penned by Bryan Fuller from a story by Fuller and series cocreator Todd Holland, was recognized, along with the "Ida's Boyfriend" episode of Fox's Malcolm in the Middle, written by Neil Thompson.
In the Longform category for original screenplays, the nominations were spread among three films that aired on basic and pay cable: FX's Redemption, by J.T. Allen; HBO's Something the Lord Made, by Peter Silverman and Robert Caswell; and Showtime's Spinning Boris, by Yuri Zeltser and Cary Bickley. Cable productions also dominated the Longform Adapted Screenplay field, with the three nominations going to Showtime's Cavedweller, adapted by Anne Meredith from the novel by lesbian author Dorothy Allison; TNT's The Wool Cap, adapted by William H. Macy and Steven Schachter from the original story Gigot by Jackie Gleason; and HBO's Emmy-winning Angels in America, which Tony Kushner adapted from his Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name.
Fox's The Simpsons nearly swept the Animation category, bagging four out of five nominations. Simpsons episodes vying for WGA Awards glory are "Today I Am a Clown," by Joel Cohen, "Fraudcast News," by Don Payne, "Milhouse Doesn't Live Here Anymore," by Julie Chambers and David Chambers, and "Catch 'Em If You Can," by Ian Maxtone-Graham. Cartoon Network's Justice League rounded out the category with a mention for "Starcrossed," written by Rich Fogel, John Ridley, and Dwayne McDuffie from a story by Fogel. In the Comedy-Variety Series category, NBC's Late Night With Conan O'Brien was the only late-night program on the Big Three networks to earn a mention. Fox's Mad TV received a nomination, as did Showtime's Penn & Teller Bullshit! and HBO's Real Time With Bill Maher.
In the catchall category encompassing comedy-variety (Music, Awards, Tributes, and Specials), the contenders are two awards shows that aired on CBS: 58th annual Tony Awards, written by Dave Boone and Bruce Vilanch, and Kennedy Center Honors, written by George Stevens Jr. and Sara Lukinson. The writing team on CBS's soap stalwart The Guiding Light has no competition, literally, as the sole nominee in the Daytime Serial category. In the radio medium, CBS Radio and ABC News Radio each earned two noms in the top category of News, Regularly Scheduled. CBS's mentions went to writer Robert Mank for the CBS News Hourly report and to Gail Lee for Remembrances. ABC's noms went to two writers for the World News This Week report, Marianne Pryor and Stuart Chamberlain Jr. The other nomination went to Infinity Radio Network scribe Bill Spadaro for the 1010 WINS Afternoon Drive report.
Following are the nominees in the other TV categories:
Children's Script: A Separate Peace, teleplay by Wendy Kesselman, based on the novel by John Knowles (Showtime); A Wrinkle in Time, teleplay by Susan Shilliday, based on the novel by Madeleine L'Engle (ABC)
Documentary--Current Events: Last Man Standing: Politics Texas, Style (P.O.V.), written by Paul Stekler (PBS); From China With Love (Frontline), written by Michael J. Kirk (PBS)
Documentary--Other Than Current Events: Emma Goldman (American Experience), written by Mel Bucklin (PBS); Reconstruction, Part 1 (American Experience), telescript by Llewellyn M. Smith, story by Elizabeth Deane and Patricia Garcia Rios (PBS); RFK (American Experience), written by David Grubin (PBS); The Fight (American Experience), written by Barak Goodman (PBS); "Oh, What a Beautiful Morning" (Broadway: The American Musical, episode 4), written by Jo Ann Young (PBS); Revolutionaries (They Made America), telescript by Carl Charlson, story by Harold Evans (PBS)
News--Regularly Scheduled, Bulletin, or Breaking Report: "Remembering Ray Charles" (CBS News, WBBM Chicago), written by Jonathan W. Kaplan (CBS); "The Reagan Funeral" (ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings), written by Steve Alperin (ABC)
News--Analysis, Feature, or Commentary: "Change of Heart" (60 Minutes II), written by Rebecca Peterson and Scott Pelley (CBS); "Homes for the Homeless" (UPN 9 News), written by Jacqueline M. Calayag (WWOR); "Martha Stewart" (60 Minutes II), written by Barbara Dury and Morley Safer (CBS)