The path to the Best Picture Oscar almost always winds its way through the screenplay categories, so Thursday’s feature film nominations by the Writers Guild of America could clarify this award season’s top contenders.
But the list comes with some caveats. The organization has strict eligibility requirements, which excludes films that were not written under a negotiation agreement of the WGA or its sister guilds. That’s why you’re not seeing nominations for “Belfast” and “The Power of the Dog,” two films that have been hotly tipped as Oscar frontrunners in the screenplay categories. Other ineligible films include “The Lost Daughter,” “Passing,” “Cyrano,” and international contenders such as “A Hero,” “Drive My Car,” and “Parallel Mothers.”
That said, which movies made it? The Original Screenplay category is filled with previously nominated WGA favorites such as Aaron Sorkin (“Being the Ricardos”), Adam McKay (“Don’t Look Up”), Paul Thomas Anderson (“Licorice Pizza”) and Wes Anderson (” The French Dispatch”), with Zach Baylin’s script for “King Richard” to round out the race.
In the adapted screenplay category, three big-budget films were recognized: “Dune”, written by Jon Spaihts, Denis Villeneuve and Eric Roth; “West Side Story”, by Tony Kushner; and “Nightmare Alley”, by Guillermo del Toro and Kim Morgan. They compete against Sian Heder’s script for her movie “CODA” and “Tick, Tick… Boom!” by Steven Levenson.
The winners of the WGA Awards will be announced at a ceremony on March 20. Here is the full list of nominations.
“The Ricardos Are,” Aaron Sorkin
“Don’t Look Up”, Adam McKay
“The French Dispatch,” Wes Anderson
“King Richard”, Zach Baylin
“Licorice Pizza,” Paul Thomas Anderson
“CODA,” Sian Heder
“Dune”, Jon Spaihts, Denis Villeneuve and Eric Roth
“Nightmare Alley”, Guillermo del Toro and Kim Morgan
“Tap, tap… Boom!,” Steven Levenson
“West Side Story”, Tony Kushner
“Being Costeau”, Mark Monroe and Pax Wasserman