Emerg­ing screen­writ­ers hon­oured with Ni­choll awards

The Daily Press (Timmins) - - ENTERTAINMENT - Jonathan Lan­drum Jr.

bev­erly Hills, Calif. — Five emerg­ing screen­writ­ers are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing a break­through of a life­time earn­ing praise from the film academy for their work.

the academy of mo­tion Pic­ture arts and Sciences rec­og­nized each screen­writer at the Ni­choll Fel­low­ships in Screen­writ­ing on thurs­day night. the three in­di­vid­u­als along with a hus­band-and-wife writ­ing duo re­ceived $35,000 and had their work read live by ac­tors Jamie Chung, lily Collins, Ken Jeong and blair un­der­wood.

the event was held at the academy’s head­quar­ters in bev­erly hills, Cal­i­for­nia.

Four screen plays se­lected in­clude: al­li­son and Ni­co­las buck­melter, amer­i­can refugee; Joey Clarke, Jr., miles; Grace Sher­man, Num­bers and Words; and Wenonah Wilms, horse­head Girls.

all those countless hours writ­ing movie scripts, crank­ing out rough drafts and read­ing screen­writ­ing tu­to­ri­als to per­fect their craft have paid off for them.

“you sit at a Star­bucks hop­ing that maybe some­day you’ll get the recog­ni­tion and some­one will read your work,” said al­li­son buck­melter, who had been writ­ing with her hus­band for more than a decade. “When we found out, we were ex­cited. this is very val­i­dat­ing.”

her hus­band, Ni­co­las buck melt er, of­fered a tip to other aspir­ing screen­writ­ers: “Just keep writ­ing. Put some­thing on pa­per, even if it’s bad. No­body is go­ing to read a blank page.”

Win­ners will re­ceive guid­ance from academy mem­bers as they com­plete a fea­ture-length screen­play dur­ing their fel­low­ship year. the win­ning screen­plays were cho­sen from nearly 6,900 sub­mis­sions.

Since 1986, the com­pe­ti­tion has awarded hun­dreds of fel­low­ships, aim­ing to iden­tify and en­cour­age tal­ented new screen­writ­ers.

Past fel­lows have in­cluded wri­ter­di­rec­tor al­li­son an­ders, Pulitzer­win­ning nov­el­ist Jeff eu­genides and os­car win­ner Su­san­nah Grant (erin brock­ovich). the films Find­ing For­rester and trans­form­ers: age of ex­tinc­tion were also writ­ten by past Ni­choll fel­lows.

ac­tor lily Collins is star­ring in the up­com­ing ted bundy biopic ex­tremely Wicked, Shock­ingly evil and vile. the film’s orig­i­nal script, writ­ten by michael Wer­wie, won a Ni­choll Fel­low­ship prize in 2012.

“We to get to bring life into th­ese scenes,” she said. “th­ese writ­ers get to see and get a lit­tle taste of what it feels like to hear ac­tors read their work. So the idea of one get­ting off the ground and fi­nally gets made is pretty cool.”

The as­sO­Ci­aTed Press files

This com­bi­na­tion photo shows ac­tors Jamie Chung, from left, Blair Un­der­wood, Lily Collins and Ken Jeong who read se­lected pas­sages from four win­ning scripts Thurs­day, that were se­lected out of a pool of nearly 6,700 sub­mis­sions world­wide.

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