By Eric Eidelstein | Indiewire January 15, 2014 at 2:59PM
Almost a year after Alex Gibney first premiered his acclaimed and controversial documentary "We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks" at Sundance, he has been chosen as the Paul Selvin Award recipient by the Writers Guild of America, West. This marks the first time a documentary film has won the honor.
“Alex Gibney is one of the foremost documentary filmmakers of this generation," said WGAW President Christopher Keyser. "His work has been a filmic conscience for our times. In "We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks", Mr. Gibney tackles issues arising out of us living, increasingly, in a surveillance state – from the public’s right to know and the press’ right to publish, to the treatment of whistleblowers."
The Paul Selvin Award (named after the late WGA counsel) is given to a script that "exemplifies the liberties and civil rights that are essential to writers everywhere," a cause that Selvin fervently promoted throughout his career.
Gibney, a three-time Writers Guild Award winner's, screenplay chronicles the rapid emergence of Julian Assange's WikiLeaks and the subsequent consequences that the website--and digital age as a whole--fosters. He previously won an Oscar for "Taxi to the Dark Side," a documentary about the torture policy during the Bush Administration.
The award will be presented to Gibney on Saturday Feb 1. at the JW Marriot Los Angeles.