AMPAS Names Finalists for Annual Nicholl Fellowships
by Eugene Hernandez
Ten finalists have been chosen from the more than 6,000 scripts submitted for the annual Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Up to five writers are competing for a $30,000 fellowship that will be judged by a committee of writers including John Gay, Fay Kanin, Hal Kanter, Dan Petrie Jr. and Steven Zaillian, cinematographer Steven Poster, editor Mia Goldman, actor Eva Marie Saint, executive Bill Mechanic, producers Gale Anne Hurd, David Nicksay and Buffy Shutt, and agent Ron Mardigian.
Selected as finalists this year are: "Cray Fenwick" by David Page (Baltimore, Maryland), "Escher" by Jonathan Goldman (Santa Monica, California), "Fenian's Trace" by Sean Mahoney (Nicasio, California), "For One or For All" by Karyn Taylor (Marina Del Rey, California), "The Gaza Golem" by (Daniel Lawrence, Los Angeles), "Letter Quest" by (Doug Davidson, Baldwin, New York), "Pompeii" by Justin Jones and Nick Garey (Los Angeles), "The Secret Boy," by Whit Rummel (Chapel Hill, North Carolina), "Split Infinity," by John Sinclair and Nova Jacobs (Los Angeles), "Yonkheer," by Wendy Henson (Tualatin, Oregon).
The annual Nicholl Fellowship competition is open to individuals who have not sold or optioned a script for film or television for more than $5,000 or received a fellowship or prize that includes a "first look" clause, an option, or any other quid pro quo involving the writer's work.
The Academy noted that this is the first time that two scripts written collaboratively have made it to the final round. The organization first allowed collaborative efforts in 2001.