And Now, the 2011 WGA Award Nominees

And Now, the 2011 WGA Award Nominees (photo)

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Yesterday the producers, today the writers. Tomorrow, presumably, the caterers and grips (my sources tell me the duck confit on the “Clash of the Titans” set was on point). Yes, the Writers Guild of America have announced their picks for finest movies of 2010. And writers must have a unique perspective on cinematic excellence, right? A better or at least different knowledge of what makes a script and a film great? No, they pretty much like all the same movies we do. And the nominees are:

Original Screenplay
“Black Swan”
Screenplay by Mark Heyman and Andres Heinz and John McLaughlin
Story by Andres Heinz

“The Fighter”
Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson

Written by Christopher Nolan

“The Kids Are All Right”
Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg

“Please Give”
Written by Nicole Holofcener

Adapted Screenplay
“127 Hours”
Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
Based on the book “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” by Aron Ralston

“I Love You Phillip Morris”
Written by John Requa & Glenn Ficarra
Based on the book by Steven McVicker

“The Social Network”
Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
Based on the book “The Accidental Billionaires” by Ben Mezrich

“The Town”
Screenplay by Peter Craig and Ben Affleck & Aaron Stockard
Based on the novel “Prince of Thieves” by Chuck Hogan

“True Grit”
Screenplay by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
Based on the novel by Charles Portis

Documentary Screenplay
“Enemies of the People”
Written, Directed, Filmed and Produced by Rob Lemkin and Thet Sambath

“Freedom Riders”
Written, Produced and Directed by Stanley Nelson

Written and Directed by Josh Fox

“Inside Job”
Produced, Written and Directed by Charles Ferguson
Co-written by Chad Beck, Adam Bolt

“The Two Escobars”
Written by Michael Zimbalist, Jeff Zimbalist

“Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin’ About Him)?”
Written and Directed by John Scheinfeld

Before you ask the WGA considers docs for the Documentary Screenplay Award if they feature an onscreen writing credit (they also need to be exhibited theatrically in New York or LA for one week). Regarding the list of films as a whole, I suppose there are a few surprises (including “I Love You Phillip Morris” by Requa and Ficarra) and it is interesting to note that seven out of the ten fiction film nominees came from writers who were also directors. But you didn’t need a crystal ball to predict most of these movies.

People arbitrarily decide whether it was a “good year for movies” or a “bad year for movies.” 2010 had the “bad year” tag for a while. But then so many good films came out in the four months that I’ve started arguing the opposite. At this point, the repetition and boredom of this awards season is making me rethink that position. There can only be this much consensus about the best movies of the year if there aren’t a lot of really good movies to pick between. Sure “The Social Network” and “Black Swan” were great (they made my top ten list, after all). But it seems like everyone loves these movies. The fun of awards season is the debate: “Saving Private Ryan” versus “Shakespeare in Love,” “Avatar” versus “The Hurt Locker.” And that’s something that’s sorely lacking this year so far. I hope the Caterers and Grips Nominees stir some up. Winners for the WGA Awards will be announced Saturday, February 5 at simultaneous ceremonies in New York and Los Angeles.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.


It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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