The Writers Guild of America has weighed in on the funniest films of all time, putting together a list of 101 features they consider to be the best comedies the movie business has ever offered. The awards for the 101 funniest screenplays were announced at Hollywood’s Arclight Cinema Dome over a two-hour discussion panel hosted by Rob Reiner. The WGA East announced the winners in New York at the New School Auditorium in Greenwich Village.
Woody Allen’s Oscar-winning screenplay for “Annie Hall” topped the list, though it was just one of seven titles by the writer-director that was included on the list. Allen’s other entries included “Sleeper,” “Bananas,” “Take the Money and Run,” “Broadway Danny Rose,” “Love and Death” and “Manhattan.” “Some Like it Hot,” “Groundhog Day,” “Airplane!” and “Tootsie” rounded out the top five.
Other screenwriters with notable mentions included the late Harold Ramis, who had two features in the top 10, thanks to “Groundhog Day” and “Animal House” and four films mentioned overall (the remaining two were “Ghostbusters” and “Caddyshack”), while the legendary Preston Sturgess also had four features recognized, from the classic screwball comedy “The Lady Eve” to the heralded Hollywood satire “Sullivan’s Travels.” Mel Brooks had three scripts place in the top 12: “Young Frankenstein,” “Blazing Saddles” and “The Producers.”
Surprisingly, silent film comedians were largely rejected. While Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton made the list courtesy of “The Gold Rush” and “The General,” respectively, there was no love for Harold Lloyd or Laurel & Hardy. Some of the funniest films of the past decade fared better, as “Bridesmaids,” “The Hangover” and “Superbad” all made the list. “Bridesmaids” ranked as high as 16th place.