Oscar 2007: Writers Guild Calls Off Its Awards Show

January 10, 2008–The WGA has called off the February 9 awards show in Los Angeles–unless it has ended its strike by then.

In a brief announcement Thursday afternoon, the guild said it would announce its awards as planned but added, There will be no Writers Guild of America West show until the strike is over.

The guild, which announced its screenplay nominations earlier Thursday, has been planning to hold its event at the Bonaventure in downtown Los Angeles.

For its part, the WGA East has not yet decided whether it will proceed with its awards event, which has been set for the Hudson Theater at the Broadway Millenium Hotel in Gotham. We are exploring our options and we will let you know when we have made a decision, said WGA East rep Sherry Goldman.

With the DGA not yet having set its talks with the AMPTP, its unlikely that the 10-week writers strike would be settled by Feb. 9. WGA talks collapsed on Dec. 7 after the AMPTP demand that the scribes remove half a dozen proposals from the table; no new WGA negotiations have been scheduled.

Before canceling the kudos, the WGA announced the nominations for adapted and original screenplays, as well as best documentary.

Among the nominations, original screenplay nods went to Diablo Cody for Juno, Tony Gilroy for Warners Michael Clayton, Tamara Jenkins for Searchlights The Savages, Judd Apatow for Us Knocked Up and Nancy Oliver for MGMs Lars and the Real Girl.

Adapted nods went to Ethan and Joel Coen for Miramaxs No Country for Old Men, Paul Thomas Anderson for Par Vantages There Will Be Blood, Ronald Harwood for Miramaxs The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Sean Penn for Vantages Into the Wild and James Vanderbilt for Zodiac.

WGA voters named all five of the films nominated earlier this week for the DGAs top directing award. Anderson, the Coen brothers, Gilroy and Penn all received DGA nominations as did Julian Schnabel for Diving Bell.

Documentary nominations Anthony Giacchino for First Runss The Camden 28, Bill Guttentag, Dan Sturman and Elisabeth Bentley for Thinkfilms Nanking, Charles Ferguson for Magnolias No End in Sight, Richard Berge, Nicole Newnham and Bonni Cohen for Menemshaws The Rape of Europa, Michael Moore for Lionsgates Sicko and Alex Gibney for Thinkfilms Taxi to the Dark Side.

Moore won the WGA original screenplay award four years ago for Bowling for Columbine dcumentary. The WGA then decided to set up a separate documentary category, making docs ineligible for the screenplay categories.

Documentaries that were eligible featured an on-screen writing credit and were exhibited theatrically in Los Angeles or New York for one week in 2007. Credited writers were required to join the WGAs Nonfiction Writers Caucus but the scripts were not required to have been written under WGA jurisdiction to be considered.

WGA winners have matched Oscar winners in the original category eight times in the last 13 years, including last year when Michael Arndt won for Little Miss Sunshine. In the adapted screenplay category, winners have matched nine times in the last 13 years with William Monahan taking both trophies last year for The Departed.

Features eligible for a WGA award were released during 2007 and produced under WGA jurisdiction or under that of affiliate guilds in Australia, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, and New Zealand. There were 164 pics eligible in the original screenplay and 103 in adapted screenplay.

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

“Juno” – Writtenby Diablo Cody, Fox Searchlight
“Michael Clayton” – Written by Tony Gilroy, Warner Bros. Pictures
“The Savages” – Written by Tamara Jenkins, Fox Searchlight
“Knocked Up” – Written by Judd Apatow, Universal Pictures
“Lars and the Real Girl” – Written by Nancy Oliver, MGM

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

“No Country For Old Men” – Screenplay by Ethan Coen & Joel Coen, Based on the Novel by Cormac McCarthy, Miramax
“There Will Be Blood” – Screenplay by Paul Thomas Anderson, Based on the Novel Oil by Upton Sinclair, Paramount Vantage
“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” – Screenplay by Ronald Harwood, Based on the Book by Jean-Dominique Bauby, Miramax
“Into the Wild” – Screenplay by Sean Penn, Based on the Book by Jon Krakauer, Paramount Vantage
“Zodiac” – Screenplay by James Vanderbilt, Based on the Book by Robert Graysmith, Paramount Pictures

DOCUMENTARY SCREENPLAY

“The Camden 28” – Written by Anthony Giacchino, First Run Features
“Nanking” – Screenplay by Bill Guttentag & Dan Sturman & Elisabeth Bentley, Story by Bill Guttentag & Dan Sturman, THINKFilm
“No End In Sight” – Written by Charles Ferguson, Magnolia Pictures
“The Rape Of Europa” – Written by Richard Berge, Nicole Newnham and Bonni Cohen, Menemsha Films
“Sicko” – Written by Michael Moore, Lionsgate/The Weinstein Company
“Taxi To The Dark Side” – Written by Alex Gibney, THINKFilm

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