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WGA Awards: CODA and Don’t Look Up Win Top Honors From Writers Guild

March 20, 2022 08:00 | By
Don't Look Up

Image via Netflix

Apple’s CODA continued its hot streak at the WGA Awards on Sunday afternoon following its big win at the PGA Awards on Saturday night. Siân Heder‘s acclaimed film won Best Adapted Screenplay, while Adam McKay‘s Netflix satire Don’t Look Up won Original Screenplay honors.

The screenwriting races at the Academy Awards are still wide open, however, as Oscar nominees such as The Power of the Dog, The Lost Daughter and Drive My Car weren’t nominated by the WGA (eligibility issues, no doubt) so the only Oscar nominee that CODA actually toppled was Dune.

Likewise, while Don’t Look Up did triumph over fellow Oscar nominees King Richard and Licorice Pizza at the WGAs, it didn’t have to contend with the other two Oscar-nominated original screenplays — Belfast and The Worst Person in the World, so it’s extremely unlikely that McKay will win his second Oscar following The Big Short.

Hacks

Image via HBO

On the TV side, HBO had a hell of a night, winning honors for Drama Series (Succession), Comedy Series (Hacks), New Series (Hacks) and Original Longform Series (Mare of Easttown), though Netflix’s Maid managed to win the Adapted Longform award. Episodic awards went to Succession (drama) and Hulu’s The Great (comedy).

Elsewhere, Conan O’Brien and his team of writers beat out John Oliver and Jon Stewart for a WGA Award, while Netflix’s absurdist comedy I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson beat Saturday Night Live in the Comedy/Variety Sketch Series category.

Comedian Ashley Nicole Black hosted the virtual ceremony, which saw winners accept their awards via pre-taped speeches. While Black did take a moment to acknowledge “our fellow humans fighting for their lives in Ukraine,” she kept things light for the most part, joking about how the WGA’s decision to have a virtual ceremony saved writers from “having to answer the question, ‘So what are you working on right now?’ The only thing worse than answering that question is having to answer it when you’re trying to bite into a free slider,” said Black, who herself was nominated as a writer on Season 2 of Ted Lasso.

Black said the Apple show “is about having hope even if you don’t win… but just because I wrote for it doesn’t mean I agree with it. Don’t you fuck me, Hacks!” Sure enough, Hacks wound up beating Ted Lasso, though Black was still in a celebratory mood because “some of my best friends are hacks!”

Barry Jenkins

Image via Amazon Studios

One honoree who is definitely not a hack is Barry Jenkins, who received the Paul Selvin Award, which is given out each year to the WGA member whose script “best embodies the constitutional and civil rights and liberties key to the survival of free writers.” Jenkins’ limited series The Underground Railroad was nominated in the Adapted Longform category, though it ultimately fell to Maid.

Colman Domingo (If Beale Street Could Talk) presented Jenkins with the award, which the director called “an affirmation to keep working the way we are.”

Jenkins went on to quote Ralph Ellison, saying “Good fiction is made of what is real, and reality is difficult to come by.” He concluded by pleading for the crowd to “do the work to find what’s true about humanity and human experiences and put them into our stories to share our version of reality that can’t be denied.”

Meanwhile, writer/comedian and legendary late-night host Dick Cavett received the Evelyn F. Burkey Award, which is given to someone who has brought honor and dignity to writers. Seth Meyers presented the award to Cavett, who thanked the many writers he worked with over the years as well as Burkey herself.

And finally, the Writers Guild paid tribute to Bob Saget, who died earlier this year. The WGA hopes that next year’s awards show will return to an in-person format, though Black likened the Guild’s simultaneous ceremonies in New York and Los Angeles to “divorced parents throwing competing Christmases.”

CODA

Image via Apple TV+

The complete list of WGA Awards winners is below:

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Being the Ricardos
Written by Aaron Sorkin; Amazon Studios

Don’t Look Up (WINNER)
Screenplay by Adam McKay, Story by Adam McKay & David Sirota; Netflix

The French Dispatch of the Liberty
Kansas Evening Sun, Screenplay by Wes Anderson, Story by Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola & Hugo Guinness & Jason Schwartzman; Searchlight Pictures

King Richard
Written by Zach Baylin; Warner Bros. Pictures

Licorice Pizza
Written by Paul Thomas Anderson; United Artists

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

CODA (WINNER)
Screenplay by Siân Heder, Based on the Original Motion Picture La Famille Belier Directed by Eric Lartigau, Written by Victoria Bedos, Stanislas Carree de Malberg, Eric Lartigau and Thomas Bidegain; Apple

Dune
Screenplay by Jon Spaihts and Denis Villeneuve and Eric Roth, Based on the novel Dune Written by Frank Herbert; Warner Bros. Pictures

Nightmare Alley
Screenplay by Guillermo del Toro & Kim Morgan, Based on the Novel by William Lindsay Gresham; Searchlight Pictures

tick…tick…BOOM!
Screenplay by Steven Levenson, Based on the play by Jonathan Larson; Netflix

West Side Story
Screenplay by Tony Kushner, Based on the Stage Play, Book by Arthur Laurents, Music by Leonard Bernstein, Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Play Conceived, Directed and Choreographed by Jerome Robbins; 20th Century Studios

DOCUMENTARY SCREENPLAY

Being Cousteau
Written by Mark Monroe & Pax Wasserman; National Geographic

Exposing Muybridge (WINNER)
Written by Marc Shaffer; Inside Out Media

Like a Rolling Stone: The Life & Times of Ben Fong-Torres
Written by Suzanne Joe Kai; StudioLA.TV

DRAMA SERIES

Succession, written by Jesse Armstrong, Jon Brown, Jamie Carragher, Ted Cohen, Francesca Gardiner, Lucy Prebble, Georgia Pritchett, Tony Roche, Susan Soon He Stanton, Will Tracy; HBO/HBO Max (WINNER)

The Handmaid’s Tale, written by Yahlin Chang, Nina Fiore, Dorothy Fortenberry, Jacey Heldrich, John Herrera, Bruce Miller, Aly Monroe, Kira Snyder, Eric Tuchman; Hulu

Loki, written by Bisha K. Ali, Elissa Karasik, Eric Martin, Michael Waldron; Disney+

The Morning Show, written by Jeff Augustin, Brian Chamberlayne, Kerry Ehrin, Kristen Layden, Erica Lipez, Justin Matthews, Adam Milch, Stacy Osei-Kuffour, Torrey Speer, Scott Troy, Ali Vingiano; Apple TV+

Yellowjackets, written by Cameron Brent Johnson, Katherine Kearns, Jonathan Lisco, Ashley Lyle, Bart Nickerson, Liz Phang, Ameni Rozsa, Sarah L. Thompson, Chantelle M. Wells; Showtime

COMEDY SERIES

Hacks, written by Lucia Aniello, Joanna Calo, Jessica Chaffin, Paul W. Downs, Cole Escola, Janis E. Hirsch, Ariel Karlin, Katherine Kearns, Andrew Law, Joe Mande, Pat Regan, Samantha Riley, Michael Schur, Jen Statsky; HBO/HBO Max (WINNER)

Curb Your Enthusiasm, written by Larry David, Steve Leff, Carol Leifer, Jeff Schaffer, Nathaniel Stein; HBO/HBO Max

Only Murders in the Building, written by Thembi Banks, Matteo Borghese, Rachel Burger, Kirker Butler, Madeleine George, John Hoffman, Stephen Markley, Steve Martin, Kristin Newman, Ben Philippe, Kim Rosenstock, Ben Smith, Rob Turbovsky; Hulu

Ted Lasso, written by Jane Becker, Ashley Nicole Black, Leann Bowen, Sasha Garron, Brett Goldstein, Brendan Hunt, Joe Kelly, Bill Lawrence, Jamie Lee, Michael Orton-Toliver, Jason Sudeikis, Phoebe Walsh, Bill Wrubel; Apple TV+

What We Do in the Shadows, written by Jake Bender, Jemaine Clement, Zach Dunn, Shana Gohd, Sam Johnson, Chris Marcil, William Meny, Sarah Naftalis, Stefani Robinson, Marika Sawyer, Paul Simms, Lauren Wells; FX Networks

NEW SERIES

Hacks, written by Lucia Aniello, Joanna Calo, Jessica Chaffin, Paul W. Downs, Cole Escola, Janis E. Hirsch, Ariel Karlin, Katherine Kearns, Andrew Law, Joe Mande, Pat Regan, Samantha Riley, Michael H. Schur, Jen Statsky; HBO/HBO Max (WINNER)

Loki, written by Bisha K. Ali, Elissa Karasik, Eric Martin, Michael Waldron; Disney+

Only Murders in the Building, written by Thembi Banks, Matteo Borghese, Rachel Burger, Kirker Butler, Madeleine George, John Hoffman, Stephen Markley, Steve Martin, Kristin Newman, Ben Philippe, Kim Rosenstock, Ben Smith, Rob Turbovsky; Hulu

Reservation Dogs, written by Tazbah Rose Chavez, Sydney Freeland, Sterlin Harjo, Migizi Pensoneau, Tommy Pico, Taika Waititi, Bobby Wilson; FX Networks

Yellowjackets, written by Cameron Brent Johnson, Katherine Kearns, Jonathan Lisco, Ashley Lyle, Bart Nickerson, Liz Phang, Ameni Rozsa, Sarah L. Thompson, Chantelle M. Wells; Showtime

Mare of Easttown

Image via HBO

ORIGINAL LONGFORM

Mare of Easttown, written by Brad Ingelsby; HBO/HBO Max (WINNER)

American Horror Story: Double Feature, written by Manny Coto, Brad Falchuk, Ryan Murphy, Kristen Reidel, Reilly Smith; FX Networks

Midnight Mass, written by James Flanagan, Mike Flanagan, Elan Gale, Jeff Howard, Dani Parker; Netflix

Them: Covenant, written by Christina Ham, Little Marvin, David Matthews, Dominic Orlando, Seth Zvi Rosenfeld, Francine Volpe; Prime Video

The White Lotus, written by Mike White; HBO/HBO Max

ADAPTED LONGFORM

Maid, written by Rebecca Brunstetter, Marcus Gardley, Michelle Denise Jackson, Colin McKenna, Molly Smith Metzler; inspired by the book by Stephanie Land; Netflix (WINNER)

Halston, written by Ian Brennan, Ted Malawer, Ryan Murphy, Tim Pinckney, Sharr White, Kristina Woo; based on the book Simply Halston by Steven Gaines; Netflix

Impeachment: American Crime Story, written by Flora Birnbaum, Sarah Burgess, Halley Feiffer, Daniel Pearle; based on the book A Vast Conspiracy by Jeffrey Toobin; FX Networks

The Underground Railroad, written by Jihan Crowther, Allison Davis, Jacqueline Hoyt, Barry Jenkins, Nathan C. Parker, Adrienne Rush; based on the novel by Colson Whitehead; Prime Video

WandaVision, written by Peter Cameron, Mackenzie Dohr, Laura Donney, Bobak Esfarjani, Chuck Hayward, Megan McDonnell, Jac Schaeffer, Cameron Squires; based on the Marvel Comics; Disney+

ADAPTED SHORTFORM NEW MEDIA

Debunking Borat, written by Robyn Adams, Paul Hogan, Jack Youngelson; Prime Video (WINNER)

Calls, written by Fede Alvarez, Nick Cuse, Aidan Fitzgerald, Noah Gardner, Rodo Sayagues; Apple TV+

The Expanse: One Ship, written by Wes Chatham, Julianna Damewood, Mark Fergus, Hawk Ostby, Glenton Richards; Prime Video

ANIMATION

“Planteau” (Tuca & Bertie), written by Lisa Hanawalt; Cartoon Network (WINNER)

“An Incon-Wheelie-ent Truth” (Bob’s Burgers), written by Dan Fybel; Fox

“Loft in Bedslation” (Bob’s Burgers), written by Jameel Saleem, Fox

“Must Love Dogs” (Family Guy), written by Daniel Peck; Fox

“Portrait of a Lackey on Fire” (The Simpsons), written by Rob LaZebnik & Johnny LaZebnik; Fox

“The Star of the Backstage” (The Simpsons), written by Elisabeth Kiernen Averick; Fox

Emmys

Image via HBO

EPISODIC DRAMA

“Retired Janitors of Idaho” (Succession), written by Tony Roche & Susan Soon He Stanton; HBO/HBO Max (WINNER)

“1883” (1883), written by Taylor Sheridan; Paramount+

“Birth Mother” (This Is Us), written by Eboni Freeman & Kay Oyegun; NBC

“La Amara Vita” (The Morning Show), written by Kerry Ehrin & Scott Troy; Apple TV+

“The New Normal” (New Amsterdam), written by David Schulner; NBC

“Testimony” (The Handmaid’s Tale), written by Kira Snyder; Hulu

EPISODIC COMEDY

“Alone at Last” (The Great), written by Tony McNamara; Hulu (WINNER)

“All Sales Final” (Superstore), teleplay by Jonathan Green & Gabe Miller, story by Justin Spitzer; NBC

“Enlightened Dave” (Dave), written by Luvh Rakhe & Lee Sung Jin; FX Networks

“Episode One: True Crime” (Only Murders in the Building), written by Steve Martin & John Hoffman; Hulu

“F*ckin’ Rez Dogs” (Pilot) (Reservation Dogs), written by Sterlin Harjo & Taika Waititi; FX Networks

“Pilot” (The Wonder Years), written by Saladin K. Patterson; ABC

COMEDY/VARIETY TALK SERIES

Conan, Head Writer: Matt O’Brien; Writers: Jose Arroyo, Glenn Boozan, Daniel Cronin, Andres du Bouchet, Jessie Gaskell, Skyler Higley, Brian Kiley, Laurie Kilmartin, Todd Levin, Levi MacDougall, Conan O’Brien, Andy Richter, Frank Smiley, Mike Sweeney; TBS (WINNER)

Desus & Mero, Writers: Daniel “Desus Nice” Baker, Josh Gondelman, Robert Kornhauser, Joel “The Kid Mero” Martinez, Robert A. McRae, Heben Nigatu, Mike Pielocik, Julia Young; Showtime

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, Writers: Johnathan Appel, Ali Barthwell, Tim Carvell, Liz Hynes, Greg Iwinski, Mark Kramer, Daniel O’Brien, John Oliver, Owen Parsons, Charlie Redd, Joanna Rothkopf, Chrissy Shackelford, Ben Silva, Seena Vali; HBO/HBO Max

The Problem With Jon Stewart, Head Writer: Chelsea Devantez; Writers: Kristen Acimovic, Henrik Blix, Rob Christensen, Jay Jurden, Alexa Loftus, Tocarra Mallard, Robby Slowik, Jon Stewart, Kasaun Wilson; Apple TV+

COMEDY/VARIETY SKETCH SERIES

I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson, writers: Zach Kanin, Tim Robinson, John Solomon; Netflix (WINNER)

How To With John Wilson, written by: Alice Gregory, Michael Koman, Conner O’Malley, Susan Orlean, John Wilson; HBO/HBO Max

Pause With Sam Jay, Writers: Emmy Blotnick, Ryan Donahue, Zack Fox, Megan Gailey, Robin M. Henry, Sam Jay, Langston Kerman, Jak Knight; HBO/HBO Max

Saturday Night Live, Head Writer: Michael Che, Anna Drezen, Colin Jost, Kent Sublette; Senior Writer: Bryan Tucker; Weekend Update Head Writer: Pete Schultz; Weekend Update Writers: Megan Callahan-Shah, Dennis McNicholas, Josh Patten, Mark Steinbach; Supervising Writers: Alison Gates, Fran Gillespie, Sudi Green, Streeter Seidell; Writers: James Anderson, Dan Bulla, Steven Castillo, Mike DiCenzo, Billy Domineau, Alex English, John Higgins, Steve Higgins, Martin Herlihy, Vannessa Jackson, Sam Jay, Erik Kenward, Tesha Kondrat, Dan Licata, Lorne Michaels, Ben Marshall, Jake Nordwind, Jasmine Pierce, Gary Richardson, Ben Silva, Emily Spivey, Will Stephen, Celeste Yim; NBC

That Damn Michael Che, Head Writer: Michael Che; Writing Supervised by: Gary Richardson; Writers: Rosebud Baker, Reggie Conquest, Godfrey Danchimah Jr., Calise Hawkins, Kevin Iso, Sam Jay, Matt Richards, Wil Sylvince; HBO/HBO Max

COMEDY/VARIETY SPECIALS

Full Frontal Wants to Take Your Guns, Head Writers: Kristen Bartlett, Mike Drucker; Writers: Samantha Bee, Pat Cassels, Sean Crespo, Mike Drucker, Miles Kahn, Chris Thompson, Holly Walker, Alison Zeidman Writing Supervised by Joe Grossman, Sahar Rizvi Special Material by Michael Rhoa; TBS (WINNER)

43rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors, written by Dave Boone; CBS

Drew Michael: Red Blue Green, written by Drew Michael; HBO/HBO Max

The Tony Awards Presents: Broadway’s Back!, written by Dave Boone; special material by Amber Ruffin, Marc Shaiman, Daniel J. Watts, Scott Wittman Opening Number by Amber Ruffin, Marc Shaiman, Scott Wittman; CBS

Yearly Departed, Head Writer: Bess Kalb; Writers: Karen Chee, Akilah Green, Franchesca Ramsey, Jocelyn Richard; Prime Video

QUIZ AND AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION

Baking It, Writers: Neil Casey, Jessica McKenna, Zach Reino, Niccole Thurman; Peacock (WINNER)

Capital One College Bowl, Head Writer: Scott Saltzburg; Writers: Rosemarie DiSalvo, Ryan Hopak, Jon Macks, Karissa Noel, Todd Sachs, Doug Shaffer, Grant Taylor, Bennett Webber; NBC

The Chase, Head Writer: David Levinson Wilk; Writers: Erik Agard, Eliza Bayne, Kyle Beakley, Megan Broussard, Robert King, Amy Ozols, Bobby Patton, Ellen Teitel, Ari Yolkut; ABC

Jeopardy!, Writers: Michael Davies, John Duarte, Mark Gaberman, Debbie Griffin, Michele Loud, Robert McClenaghan, Jim Rhine, Mike Richards, Billy Wisse; ABC

DAYTIME DRAMA

Days of Our Lives, Head Writer: Ron Carlivati; Writers: Lorraine Broderick, Joanna Cohen, Carolyn Culliton, Richard Culliton, Jamey Giddens, David Kreizman, Rebecca McCarty, Ryan Quan, Dave Ryan, Katherine D. Schock, Elizabeth Snyder; NBC (WINNER)

General Hospital, Head Writers: Chris Van Etten, Dan O’Connor; Associate Head Writer: Anna T. Cascio; Writers: Barbara Bloom, Suzanne Flynn, Charlotte Gibson, Lucky Gold, Kate Hall, Elizabeth Korte, Shannon Peace, David Rupel, Lisa Seidman, Scott Sickles; ABC

The Young and the Restless, Head Writer: Amanda L. Beall; Writers: Susan Banks, Jeff Beldner, Sara A. Bibel, Brent Boyd, Susan Dansby, Christopher Dunn, Sara Endsley, Janice Ferri Esser, Marin Gazzaniga, Lynn Martin, Natalie Minardi Slater, Teresa Zimmerman; CBS

CHILDREN’S EPISODIC, LONGFORM AND SPECIALS

“The Tale of the Midnight Magic” (Are You Afraid of the Dark?), written by JT Billings, Alex Ebel; Nickelodeon (WINNER)

“A Big Favor for Grampy/A Fair Way to Bounce” (Donkey Hodie), written by Adam Rudman & David Rudman, Joey Mazzarino; PBS KIDS/pbskids.org

“Park Ranger Percy / Lizard Lizzy” (Helpsters) written by Annabeth Bondor-Stone, Connor White, Liz Hara; Apple TV+

“Rice” (Waffles + Mochi), written by Lyric Lewis; Netflix

“Which Witch?” (Just Beyond), written by Mitali Jahagirdar; Disney+

DOCUMENTARY SCRIPT – CURRENT EVENTS

“The Healthcare Divide” (Frontline), written by Rick Young; PBS (WINNER)

“The Jihadist” (Frontline), written by Martin Smith & Marcela Gaviria; PBS

DOCUMENTARY SCRIPT – OTHER THAN CURRENT EVENTS

“Citizen Hearst, Part One” (American Experience), written by Gene Tempest; PBS (WINNER)

“A Writer” (Hemingway), written by Geoffrey C. Ward; PBS

“Citizen” (Amend: The Fight for America), written by Sasha Stewart and Robe Imbriano; Netflix

“Round One” (Muhammad Ali), written by David McMahon & Sarah Burns; PBS

NEWS SCRIPT – REGULARLY SCHEDULED, BULLETIN OR BREAKING REPORT

“The Unequal Recession” (60 Minutes), written by Katie Kerbstat Jacobson, Scott Pelley, Nicole Young; CBS News (WINNER)

“Against All Enemies” (60 Minutes), written by Katie Kerbstat Jacobson, Scott Pelley, Nicole Young; CBS News

“Democracy Lost” (60 Minutes), written by Oriana Zill de Granados, Sharyn Alfonsi; CBS News

NEWS SCRIPT – ANALYSIS, FEATURE, OR COMMENTARY

“Handcuffed to the Truth” (60 Minutes) written by Katie Kerbstat Jacobson, Scott Pelley, Nicole Young; CBS News (WINNER)

“The Fall of Kandahar” (Vice News Tonight), written by Amel Guettatfi, Ben C. Solomon, Vice News

“Unpacking How Child Welfare and Foster Care Fails Black Children” (Unpack That), written by Joel Kahn, Felice León; The Root

“The Unstudied Link Between the COVID Vaccine and Periods” (Vice News Tonight), written by Caitlin Bladt; Vice News

“Woman in Motion: Star Trek’s Nichelle Nichols and The Transformation of NASA” (CBS Sunday Morning), written by Daniel Elias, Michelle Miller; CBS

DIGITAL NEWS

“Men’s Rights Asians Think This Is Their Moment,” written by Aaron Mak; Slate.com (WINNER)

“An Oral History of the Longest-Ever Broadway Shutdown,” written by Madeline Ducharme; Slate.com

“Knives Out: Why ‘Hacks’ Works,” written by Katie Baker; TheRinger.com

“We Get to Hear Them Training to Kill Us,” written by Christina Cauterucci; Slate.com

“What if the Unorthodox Arizona Audit Declares Trump Won?” written by Jeremy Stahl; Slate.com

RADIO/AUDIO DOCUMENTARY

“One Year: 1977 ‘The Miracle Cure’” written by Evan Chung; Slate Podcast (WINNER)

“Our Year” (What Next), written by Mary Harris; Slate Podcast

“That Seattle Muzak Sound” (Decoder Ring), written by Benjamin Frisch; Slate Podcast

“Who Killed the Segway?” (Decoder Ring), written by Dan Kois, Slate Podcast

RADIO/AUDIO NEWS SCRIPT — REGULARLY SCHEDULED, BULLETIN OR BREAKING REPORT

“Surfside Condo Collapse” (CBS World News Roundup Late Edition), written by Kathleen M. Biggins; CBS News Radio (WINNER)

“Silence the Mics: Tributes to Some Famous Broadcasters,” written by Gail Lee; CBS Radio

“World News This Week — Week of August 16, 2021,” written by Robert Hawley; ABC Audio

“World News This Week — Week of January 8, 2021,” written by Joy Piazza; ABC Audio

“World News This Week – Week of September 3, 2021,” written by Joan B. Harris; ABC Audio

RADIO/AUDIO NEWS SCRIPT — ANALYSIS, FEATURE, OR COMMENTARY

“The Tasmanian Devil Tattoo” (Decoder Ring), written by Benjamin Frisch; Slate Podcast (WINNER)

“When the Culture War Comes for Your Job” (What Next), written by Mary Harris; Slate Podcast

ON-AIR PROMOTION

“Celebrating Powerful Female Leads: Trailers for The Equalizer & Why Women Kill,” written by Molly Neylan; CBS (WINNER)

“CSI: Vegas Trailers,” written by Erial Tompkins; CBS