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Zero Dark Thirty and Argo claim Writers Guild Awards

Zero Dark Thirty

Story by Jack Foley

ZERO Dark Thirty and Argo have taken top honours at the 2013 Writers Guild Awards.

Mark Boal took best original screenplay for Kathryn Bigelow’s Osama bin Laden movie, while Chris Terrio took best adapted screenplay for Ben Affleck’s Iranian hostage drama.

Upon accepting his prize, Boal paid tribute to director Bigelow (who also attended the ceremony) saying: “Kathryn you took this script, and you made it live and breathe and fly and you led all of us unflinchingly and bravely to a place of truth and beauty.”

Terrio, meanwhile, paid tribute to Affleck, while reflecting on his own path to film writing success.

Noting that he had started writing Argo way back in 2008, he said: “I couldn’t pay my rent. I was living in New York. I defaulted on my student loans. I had nothing, but I had my spec scripts and I had my guild card, and I can’t tell you how that propped me up.

“In a very lonely profession, I was in the same club as all you guys.”

Of Affleck, he added: “You are a kind and brilliant and very, very good man.”

Terrio’s success came at the expense of Lincoln, whose own screenwriter Tony Kushner nevertheless went home with an honorary award, the Paul Selvin Award, given to the script that best embodies the sprit of the constitution and civil liberties.

The awards were unveiled at simultaneous ceremonies on Sunday night (February 17, 2013) held by the WGA West at the JW Marriott Hotel in Los Angeles and WGA East at BB King’s Blues Club in New York City.

In the television categories, HBO’s Girls was crowned best new series of the year, while the awards for drama and comedy series went to the writing staffs of, respectively, AMC’s Breaking Bad and FX’s Louie.

Next awards story: Child’s Pose takes Golden Bear at Berlin Film Festival