Woody Allen receives his 20th WGA Award nomination for "Midnight… (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles…)
Woody Allen earned his 20th nomination Thursday for a Writers Guild of America Award for his original screenplay for "Midnight in Paris."
Allen, 76, received his first nomination from the WGA 46 years ago for "What's New Pussycat?" and won for 1977's "Annie Hall," 1984's "Broadway Danny Rose," 1986's "Hannah and Her Sisters" and 1989's "Crimes and Misdemeanors."
Comedies made a strong showing among the nominees this year. Joining Allen in the original screenplay category are Will Reiser for "50/50"; Annie Mumolo & Kristen Wiig for "Bridesmaids"; " Diablo Cody for "Young Adult"; and Tom McCarthy for "Win Win" (McCarthy shares story credit on the film with Joe Tiboni).
In the adapted screenplay category, Steve Zaillian will be competing against himself. He was nominated for "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," (screenplay by Zaillian, based on the novel by Stieg Larsson) and for "Moneyball" (screenplay by Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin based on the story by Stan Chervin and based on the book by Michael Lewis). Other nominees for best adapted screenplay are Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash for "The Descendants," based on the novel by Kaui Hart Hemming; Tate Taylor for "The Help," based on the novel by Kathryn Stockett; and John Logan for "Hugo," based on the book "The Invention of Hugo Cabret" by Brian Selznick.
Taylor, who also directed "The Help," said he felt "fantastic" to learn of his first WGA nomination. "It comes from my peers, of course, that is what makes it so special. It is my fellow writers and for them to give me a thumbs up."
Although many guild nominations can be looked at as bellwethers for the Oscars, WGA eligibility rules often end up disqualifying the scripts of some of the year's Academy Award favorites. This year, for example, "The Artist" is not eligible under WGA rules. Last year, scripts for films including "The King's Speech" were not eligible for WGA consideration; David Seidler eventually took home the Oscar for original screenplay for "The King's Speech."
Cody, who won the WGA award for 2007's "Juno" said Thursday morning that she was so shocked at the news that she'd received a nomination for "Young Adult" "that I almost walked in front of a car when I found out. This is the single most meaningful nomination. It is a jury of my peers. I can't even tell you how much it means to me. [The nomination] means more than the actual award in many other competitions."
"Win Win" marks the third WGA nomination for McCarthy. He was previously nominated for 2003's "The Station Agent" and 2008's "The Visitor."
McCarthy took a break from writing in his New York office Thursday morning to comment on the WGA nod. Getting a nomination from one's peers, he said, "is probably why you start doing something like [writing]. You want to do good work and earn the respect of your peers. It is sort of flattering and humbling."
"50/50" is Reiser's first screenplay and revolved around his own battle with cancer. "It was the most difficult time in my life," he said. "The whole ride of writing it, making it and turning it into something I am so proud of and that I made with my friend. That alone is so incredible and this is the icing on top of the cake."
Reached on the way to LAX on Thursday, Logan said there was a "certain bounce with my step today," regarding his nomination for "Hugo." This is his third nomination. He won a WGA award for the 1999 TV movie "RKO 281."
Nominees were also announced in the documentary screenplay category. They are: "Better This World," written by Katie Galloway & Kelly Duane de la Vega; "If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front," written by Marshall Curry and Matthew Hamachek; "Nostalgia for the Light," written by Patricio Guzmán; "Pina," screenplay by Wim Wenders; "Position Among the Stars," script by Hetty Naaijkens-Retel Helmrich, Leonard Retel Helmrich; "Senna," written by Manish Pandey.
The winners will be announced Feb. 19 at simultaneous ceremonies in Hollywood and New York.