The Writers Guild of America has announced the nominations for their awards honoring 2009’s films, with James Cameron’s script for “Avatar” something of a surprise among a batch of nominees that had many controversial exclusions due to WGA rules. The internet was buzzing last week when numerous high-profile awards contenders that had been deemed ineligible for the WGA’s kudos. Among them: “Up” and “Inglourious Basterds” in the original screenplay race, and “An Education,” “District 9,” “In The Loop,” “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” “A Single Man” and “The Road” in the adapted screenplay race.
In their place comes “Avatar,” along with expected nominees like Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner’s script for “Up In The Air,” Mark Boal’s for “The Hurt Locker,” and Geoffrey Fletcher’s for “Precious: Based on the novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire.” The biggest surprise overall was probably Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman’s script for “Star Trek” getting in over adapted screenplay possibilities like “Invictus.”
In the documentary category, Michael Moore found recognition for his Oscar snubbed “Capitalism: A Love Story,” joining a list of contenders that included “The Cove,” “Good Hair” and “Soundtrack for a Revolution.”
The full nominations are below. Winners will be honored at the 2010 Writers Guild Awards held on Saturday, February 20, 2010, at simultaneous ceremonies in New York and Los Angeles. Get a full list of 2009 awards at indieWIRE’s awards tracker.
(500) Days of Summer, Written by Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber; Fox Searchlight
Avatar, Written by James Cameron; 20th Century Fox
The Hangover, Written by Jon Lucas & Scott Moore; Warner Bros.
The Hurt Locker, Written by Mark Boal; Summit Entertainment
A Serious Man, Written by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen; Focus Features
Crazy Heart, Screenplay by Scott Cooper; Based on the novel by Thomas Cobb; Fox Searchlight
Julie & Julia, Screenplay by Nora Ephron; Based on the books Julie & Julia by Julie Powell and My Life in France by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme; Sony Pictures
Precious: Based on the novel Push by Sapphire, Screenplay by Geoffrey Fletcher; Based on the novel Push by Sapphire; Lionsgate
Star Trek, Written by Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman; Based upon Star Trek, Created by Gene Roddenberry; Paramount Pictures
Up in the Air, Screenplay by Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner; Based upon the novel by Walter Kirn; Paramount Pictures
Against the Tide, Screenplay by Richard Trank; Moriah Films
Capitalism: A Love Story, Written by Michael Moore; Overture Films
The Cove, Written by Mark Monroe; Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions
Earth Days, Written by Robert Stone; Zeitgeist Films
Good Hair, Written by Chris Rock & Jeff Stilson and Lance Crouther and Chuck Sklar; Roadside Attractions
Soundtrack for a Revolution, Written by Bill Guttentag & Dan Sturman; Freedom Song Productions and Louverture Films