The Writer’s Guild Awards are one instance this awards season where “12 Years a Slave” has no chance of winning. Not because of a lack of support for John Ridley’s script, but rather because it isn’t even eligible. Due to requirements that limit the number of screenplays to WGA members or approved production companies, a number of this year’s high-profile contenders couldn’t have received any attention, but more on that later. For now, here is the list of the films that were actually nominated.
Major profile original screenplays that were ineligible included “Fruitvale Station” and “Rush,” while adapted titles included “12 Years,” “Philomena,” “Blue is the Warmest Color” and “Short Term 12.” However, this is nothing new. Last year’s winner for original screenplay, “Django Unchained,” was ineligible here. In fact, of the four major guilds, the WGA has the least conversion from guild nominee to Oscar nom.
Still, it is a feather in the cap for all the films named on Friday. Woody Allen received his 21st nomination from the guild, along with other presumed nominees “American Hustle,” “Her,” “Nebraska,” “Before Midnight,” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.” And while it’s nice for “Lone Survivor” and “August: Osage County” to get mentioned, they will likely be two examples of films that won’t make the cross over to the Oscars.
For the second day in the row though, the biggest news is the inclusion of “Dallas Buyers Club” and the snub of “Inside Llewyn Davis.” The Coens are big industry favorites and they were eligible for original screenplay. Combine this with missing out on the Producers and Actors guilds, is “Inside Llewyn Davis” falling by the way side? These omissions make it seem more and more like a possibility that the film could miss in the major categories.
“Dallas Buyers Club” is taking all the momentum from “Inside Llewyn Davis” though. Now with nominations from SAG, PGA, and the WGA, it is clear that there is wide spread industry love for the uplifting film. What was once perceived as simply an acting contender has now become a very possible best picture nomination.
Both “Dallas” and “Inside Llewyn Davis,” however, are floating around the nine and ten positions; so to say either is a lock to get in or snubbed is near impossible. Out of the two, though, if there’s and edge it now has to be given to “Dallas.”