ARGO Navigates to USC Libraries Scripter Win
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Authors Joshuah Bearman and Antonio J. Mendez and screenwriter Chris Terrio received the 25th-annual USC Libraries Scripter Award for their contributions to "Argo." Selection committee co-chair Howard Rodman announced the winners at the black-tie event on Saturday, Feb. 9, at USC's Doheny Memorial Library.
In his acceptance speech, Bearman said, "I think that with adaptation you hope another writer can come and take a look at your work and see a new perspective and add insight, which is certainly the case with Chris Terrio."
"Argo's" Scripter win adds to the growing number of awards for the Warner Bros. film, including the American Film Institute's Movie of the Year as well as best motion picture in the drama category and best director at last month's Golden Globes. The film is nominated for seven Academy Awards.
Scripter, established by the Friends of the USC Libraries in 1988, honors the screenwriter or screenwriters of the year's most accomplished cinematic adaptation as well as the author of the written work upon which the screenplay is based. Scripter is the only award of its kind that recognizes authors of the original work alongside the adapting screenwriters.
Terrio based his adaptation on Mendez's autobiographical work "The Master of Disguise," published by William Morrow in 2000, and Bearman's article "The Great Escape," which appeared in Wired Magazine in 2007.
USC Libraries Dean Catherine Quinlan welcomed the attendees gathered in Los Angeles Times Reference Room of USC's historic Edward L. Doheny Memorial Library.
"In the context of the library, Scripter at 25 years old is a young tradition," Quinlan said. "But it is a tradition that helps our libraries collect knowledge that is far older than 25 years and one that will support discoveries by our USC community far beyond the next quarter-century."
Co-chaired by Golden Globe-winning screenwriter Naomi Foner and USC screenwriting professor and vice president of the Writers Guild of America, West, Howard Rodman, the Scripter selection committee chose "Argo" from a field of 84 eligible films. A tie in the first round of voting resulted in six finalist films this year, rather than the usual five.
The 41-member selection committee included film critics Leonard Maltin and Kenneth Turan; screenwriters Geoffrey Fletcher, Eric Roth, and Robin Swicord; authors Michael Chabon and Mona Simpson; and USC deans Catherine Quinlan of the USC Libraries, Elizabeth M. Daley of the School of Cinematic Arts and Madeline Puzo of the School of Dramatic Arts.
"With deep reserves of imagination and intellect, Mr. McMurtry and Ms. Ossana inspire USC's entire creative-arts community," Nikias said. "And for this, we warmly salute them."
Over the course of their writing partnership McMurtry and Ossana have collaborated on dozens of novels and screenplays, including "Brokeback Mountain,"which won the 2005 Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, as well as the award-winning miniseries "Streets of Laredo," "Dead Man's Walk," and "Johnson County War."They are currently collaborating on the screen adaptation of Paulette Jiles's novel "The Color of Lightning."
For more information about Scripter, visit scripter.usc.edu.
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