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The WGA Has Spoken, YOU CAN COUNT ON ME and TRAFFIC Are Best!

The best original screenplay of 2000 according to the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is Kenneth Lonergan's YOU CAN COUNT ON ME, about an orphaned brother and sister who reunite, as adults, in the house that their parents left for them in upstate New York. They soon learn that they must reconcile their differences in order to discover a sense of family. Lonergan, who also directed and co-starred, previously took screenplay honors from the L.A. Film Critics, the National Society of Film Critics and the N.Y. Film Critics Circle. A great film and a great screenplay.

Stephen Gaghan picked up the award for best adapted screenplay. His script TRAFFIC was based on the British TV series "Traffik" created by Simon Moore. TRAFFIC deals with several inter-related stories dealing with the high-stakes, and high-risk world of the drug trade. Each story evokes different emotions, some on a personal level, and others with intrigue and danger.

The late Rod Serling shared the award for best children's script for his A SUMMER STORM (Showtime), along with Paris Qualles THE COLOR OF FRIENDSHIP. Interestingly enough, Serling, who died in 1975, originally wrote the script for a 1970 Hallmark Hall of Fame program and the 2000 version was based on that script plus material from earlier drafts.

A note on the Television awards, one of my favorites last year, RKO 281, written by John Logan, based in part on the documentary "The Battle Over Citizen Kane" from The American Experience, HBO Films/Scott Free Productions, Inc., won best adapted long form.

-- Chris

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