‘Parasite,’ ‘Jojo Rabbit,’ ‘Barry,’ ‘Succession’ Triumph at 72nd WGA Awards

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The Writers Guild Awards, honoring the best screenwriters of the past year, were held on two coasts Feb. 1. Hosted by John Fugelsang at the Edison Ballroom in NYC and Ana Gasteyer at The Beverly Hilton in L.A., the guild’s 72nd annual celebration honored some of the industry’s most talented film, television, and new media writers.

Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won took home this year’s top original screenplay feature prize, for their awards season hit “Parasite.” A big winner with the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globes, the South Korean hit is nominated for six Academy Awards including in the original screenplay category. Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit,” meanwhile, earned the guild’s adapted film screenplay award—also recognized in its corresponding Oscar category among six nominations, a promising sign.

In the TV races, writers behind HBO’s “Barry,” “Chernobyl,” and “Succession,” Netflix’s “Dead to Me” and “Special,” and FX’s “Fosse/Verdon” all took home WGA trophies. HBO’s “Watchmen” was honored as the best new series.

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Writer Richard Price received the WGA East’s Ian McLellan Hunter Award and Paula Pell the Herb Sargent Award for Comedy Excellence in NYC. Meanwhile, filmmaker Nancy Meyers, introduced by Diane Keaton, accepted WGAW’s Laurel Award for Screenwriting Achievement and “Bombshell” scribe Charles Randolph, introduced by Geena Davis, accepted the Paul Selvin Award in L.A. Many presenters and winners used their time onstage to express solidarity with both writers’ assistants and with the union amid an ongoing disagreement with Hollywood’s biggest talent agencies.

The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) and the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) are made up of writers from film, TV, radio, and new media. For more information and a full list of nominees and winners, visit www.wga.org and www.wgaeast.org.

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Jack Smart
Jack Smart is the awards editor at Backstage, where he covers all things Emmy, SAG, Oscar, and Tony Awards. He also produces and hosts Backstage’s awards podcast “In the Envelope” and has interviewed some of the biggest stars of stage and screen.
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