Finalists Announced for 38th Annual HUMANITAS Prize Honoring Great Television and Film Writing

Thu Jul 19, 2012 6:00am EDT

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Finalists Announced for 38th Annual HUMANITAS Prize Honoring Great Television and Film Writing

Awards Luncheon is September 14, 2012 at the Montage Beverly Hills

Thirty-five writers were named finalists in ten categories for the 38th Annual HUMANITAS Prize, it was announced today by HUMANITAS Executive Director Cathleen Young and President Tom Fontana. The writers will be competing for $95,000 in prize money to be handed out at the annual luncheon, which will be held on Friday, September 14, 2012 at the Montage Beverly Hills. The HUMANITAS Prize was created 38 years ago to honor television and film writers for telling stories, which truly and deeply explore the human experience in a way that both entertains and enlightens.

"HUMANITAS exists to shine a light on writers that must be heard and stories that must be told," said HUMANITAS President Tom Fontana. "It is our great pleasure to acknowledge these finalists -- all incredible writers who passionately embrace the challenge of telling meaningful stories filled with memorable and compelling characters. This is an extraordinary achievement and one to be proud of."

"It is both an honor and a privilege to acknowledge this incredible group of writers," said Executive Director Cathleen Young. "They made us laugh and cry and think. They show us where we've been and where we need to go as a society. They inspire hope where there is only despair, they ignite a yearning for justice against a multitude of social ills. A thriving, democratic society needs its storytellers."

The 2012 HUMANITAS Prize Finalists are:

Feature Film Category ($10,000)
HUGO Written by: John Logan
THE CONSPIRATOR Written by: James Solomon & Gregory Bernstein
THE DESCENDANTS Written by: Alexander Payne, Jim Rash & Nat Faxon
SHAME Written by: Steve McQueen & Abi Morgan

Sundance Feature Film Category ($10,000)
BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD Written by: Benh Zeitlin & Lucy Alibar
LUV Written by: Sheldon Candis & Justin Wilson
MIDDLE OF NOWHERE Written by: Ava DuVernay

Documentary Category ($5,000)
BUCK Directed by: Cindy Meehl
CRIME AFTER CRIME Written by: Yoav Potash
I AM Written by: Tom Shadyac
SERVING LIFE Written by: Lisa R. Cohen

90 Minute Category ($10,000)
BEYOND THE BLACKBOARD Written by: Camille Thomasson (Hallmark)
CINEMA VERITÉ Written by David Seltzer (HBO)
HAVE A LITTLE FAITH Written by: Mitch Albom (Hallmark)

60 Minute Category ($10,000)
BLUE BLOODS “The Job” Written by: Brian Burns (CBS)
GREY’S ANATOMY “White Wedding” Written by: Stacy McKee (ABC)
RESCUE ME “Ashes” Written by: Denis Leary & Peter Tolan (FX)
PARENTHOOD “Remember Me, I’m The One Who Loves You” Written by: Kerry Ehrin (NBC)

30 Minute Category ($10,000)
MODERN FAMILY “Aunt Mommy” Written by: Abraham Higginbotham & Dan O’Shannon (ABC)
THE BIG C “A Little Death” Written by: Jenny Bicks (Showtime)
THE MIDDLE “The Map” Written by: Eileen Heisler & DeAnn Heline (ABC)

Children's Animation ($10,000)
POUND PUPPIES “I Never Barked for my Father” Written by: Joe Ansolabehere (The Hub)

Children's Live Action ($10,000)
RADIO REBEL Written by: Erik Patterson & Jessica Scott (Disney Channel)

The David & Lynn Angell Fellowship in Comedy Writing ($10,000)
TAMLIN HALL University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Film and Television Original script of YOUNG "Pilot”

Fellowship in Dramatic Writing ($10,000)
CAITLIN PARRISH University of Southern California, School of Cinematic Arts Original script of PAINKILLER "Pilot"

Since its inception in 1974, The HUMANITAS Prize has awarded over $3 million to more than 300 deserving television and motion picture writers whose work affirms the dignity of the human person, probes the meaning of life, and enlightens the use of human freedom. HUMANITAS exists to encourage, stimulate and sustain the nation's screenwriters in their humanizing task, and to give them the recognition they deserve. The HUMANITAS Prize is funded by an endowment established through the generosity of individuals, networks, studios and foundations. Winners of the HUMANITAS Prize have included: Geoffrey Fletcher (Precious); Steve Levitan ("Modern Family," "Frasier"); Ryan Murphy ("GLEE"); Robert & Michelle King ("The Good Wife"); David E. Kelley ("The Practice," "Picket Fences"); Ben Affleck and Matt Damon (Good Will Hunting); Steven Zaillian (Schindler's List); David Shore ("HOUSE"); Aaron Sorkin ("The West Wing"); Tim Robbins (Dead Man Walking); Jason Katims ("Friday Night Lights"); Andrew Stanton, Jim Reardon and Pete Docter (WALL-E); Aseem Batra ("Scrubs"); Nancy Oliver (Lars and the Real Girl); Eric Roth & Michael Mann (The Insider); Paul Haggis (Crash); Steven Bochco ("Hill Street Blues," "NYPD Blue") and Keir Pearson & Terry George (Hotel Rwanda).

For more information, please visit The HUMANITAS Prize at www.humanitasprize.org.

The HUMANITAS Prize
Deirdre Dooley, 310-454-8769