2013 Writers Guild Award Winners Include 'Argo', 'Sugar Man' and 'Zero Dark Thirty'

2013 Writers Guild Award WinnersThe Writers Guild Association (WGA) handed out the 2013 WGA Awards tonight and as tired as you may be of hearing it, Argo is once again among the winners, this time with Chris Terrio winning Adapted Screenplay, pretty much sealing the deal at the Oscars as well as far as I'm concerned.

The screenplay for Argo was up against fellow Oscar nominees in Tony Kushner's screenplay for Lincoln, David Magee's screenplay for Life of Pi and David O. Russell's screenplay for Silver Linings Playbook. Before tonight I had kept Kushner's screenplay at #1 in my predictions for Best Adapted Screenplay, but no more. Oh well, Kushner was overheard at the ceremony saying he was working on another screenplay for Spielberg (source), but didn't elaborate on the content. Perhaps he'll have a shot with that one.

In the original category, it was Mark Boal winning for Zero Dark Thirty, but this is a category that isn't quite as predictive as Adapted when it comes to the Oscars considering the current top two contenders weren't even eligible for the award based on WGA rules.

Right now I have Michael Haneke's screenplay for Amour ranked #1, just ever-so-slightly over Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained with Boal's script running third. For the longest time I had Zero Dark Thirty at #1, but momentum on the pic has seemed to fade. It's nice to see a little recognition for it here, but when it isn't facing off against a full field of competitors is a win really... a win?

And, finally, in the documentary category it was Malik Bendejelloul's screenplay for Searching for Sugar Man that took home the award. Sugar Man is currently the most likely film to win Best Documentary at the Oscars.

I have listed the winners below alongside the nominees as well as links to the nominated screenplays that are available online. I have also updated my Oscar predictions in both Adapted and Original Screenplay categories. You can check those out by clicking on the category of your chosing.

Additionally, I have updated the Oscar Overture with tonight's three winners. Click here to have a look.


  • Flight, Written by John Gatins; Paramount Pictures [Download the Script]
  • Looper, Written by Rian Johnson; TriStar Pictures [Download the Script]
  • The Master, Written by Paul Thomas Anderson; The Weinstein Company [Download the Script]
  • Moonrise Kingdom, Written by Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola; Focus Features [Download the Script]
  • Zero Dark Thirty, Written by Mark Boal; Columbia Pictures


  • Argo, Screenplay by Chris Terrio; Based on a selection from The Master of Disguise by Antonio J. Mendez and the Wired Magazine article "The Great Escape" by Joshuah Bearman; Warner Bros. Pictures
  • Life of Pi, Screenplay by David Magee; Based on the novel by Yann Martel; 20th Century Fox
  • Lincoln, Screenplay by Tony Kushner; Based in part on the book "Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln" by Doris Kearns Goodwin; DreamWorks Pictures [Download the Script]
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Screenplay by Stephen Chbosky; Based on his book; Summit Entertainment [Download the Script]
  • Silver Linings Playbook, Screenplay by David O. Russell; Based on the novel by Matthew Quick; The Weinstein Company [Download the Script]


  • The Central Park Five, Written by Sarah Burns and David McMahon and Ken Burns; Sundance Selects
  • The Invisible War, Written by Kirby Dick; Cinedigm Entertainment Group
  • Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God, Written by Alex Gibney; HBO Documentary Films
  • Searching for Sugar Man, Written by Malik Bendejelloul; Sony Pictures Classics
  • We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, Written by Brian Knappenberger; Cinetic Media
  • West of Memphis, Written by Amy Berg & Billy McMillin; Sony Pictures Classics
  • Ra

    Lincoln had the best written screenplay though. Oh well, congrats to Argo.

    • Robin

      An award for jews given by jews. Looks like they will stop at nothing to force people into the theatres to watch Argoh. This film is garbage both in its entertainment value as well as factuality...don't waste $10 just to have your time wasted by jews trying to rewrite history yet again and get us into yet another war for their own benefits. hollyjude will not halt its uncontrollable urge to defecate for us and call it infotainment.... and charge us for watching it!

      • Chris138


      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

        Well, I'm with ya on the war part.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/DavidG/ David Gaillardetz


      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/lalecture/ lalecture

        They's some intensely passionate words!!

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Xarnis/ Xarnis

    So this confirms my thoughts about Argo or best Adapeted Screenplay. Hal to see Zero Dark Thirty getting a boost but I'm not sure if it will win since its drowned in controversy and criticism. And it's against Tarantino.

    • Art

      Yea I think Tarantino will take the Oscar as well, he got robbed by the guild. Tarantino has won everywhere else including the Golden Globe, where it was up against adapted screenplays as well.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/navaneethks/ navaneethks

        Well I do't think Tarantino got robbed. Because from what I heard, he is not a member of the WGA and so not eligible to be nominated. But yes I really hope Tarantino takes the Oscars for Best Original Screenplay

        • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/lalecture/ lalecture

          Tarantino's screenplays have almost always been among my favorites. I am so glad he is finally getting some kudos for his brilliance. Of course, his style is unique and sometimes hard to swallow for some more distinguished folk! His win at the baftas sealed it in my opinion for this category at the oscars.

      • Art

        Yea I realized it after I had posted the comment

  • Art

    Wow, Argo has a possibility of winning three Oscars after all. Cool race. Crash has been the only other film to win with three in recent years (have only checked as far as 92).

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

    Wow, I thought Argo would surely lose to Lincoln. Jesus this is depressing. There was no film I was more offended by in 2012 than Argo... so naturally, it's winning EVERY SINGLE AWARD. I feel like the cast of Requiem for a Dream at the end.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

      and to see Zero Dark Thirty win a screenplay award over The Master is extremely unpleasant.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/JoshP./ Josh P.

    The minute I started to really like the idea of Tony Kushner winning an Oscar is the moment I started to predict Argo would win Best Adapted Screenplay. Once you become emotionally invested in a category, that's the one that will disappoint you the most. Oh well. Tony Kushner still wrote an incredible screenplay and that's all that counts for me. As for Boal, while I'd wish this win would repeat at the Oscars, I don't think it will. Still believe Tarantino will win Original.

  • Frank

    So Argo will win Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and probably Best Film Editing. Most Best Picture winners win at least 4 Oscars during the night, so maybe sound editing?

    The last Best Picture winner to win less than 4 Oscars was Crash btw with only 3 wins.

    • Art

      Yea, I've been thinking it was an unusual low count of Oscars for a best picture winner as soon as Argo was looking like the clear winner. Now it looks like it might get at least three like Crash. Good for them, I'm still bummed out for the directing snub though, but oh well.

  • Chris

    Glad Lincoln didn't win. I dislike that movie more and more every time I think about it. I have seen Silver Linings Playbook, but I can understand why Argo won. It did have the best line of the year, "Argo fuck yourself." The good news though is that all these wins for Argo just make the Academy look stupid for not nominating Affleck.

  • http://smartfilm.blogspot.com SmartFilm

    Had I been handing out the awards, I'd be giving them to 'Django Unchained' for Original and 'Perks of Being a Wallflower' for adapted (and yes, I know Django wasn't even in the running.)

    Seems like the road is paved for 'Argo' but I'm also not sure about the 'Zero Dark Thirty' win come Oscar night. Hoping Tarantino takes the win and think he just might.

  • Newbourne

    Why so much hate on Argo and so much love for Lincoln? Lincoln was a pretentious and boring. It was a masturbatory session in Lincoln's name. I bet no matter how bad the movie was, people would still enjoy it because it was our American Hero Abraham Lincoln. I bet that non-Americans just sat there and yawned while looking at their watch.

    And to say Day-Lewis wasn't good would be a lie, but to say he was great would be equally as untruthful. He can't get American pronunciations correctly. In fact, he has always struggled with them and Lincoln was the prime example. He can't get simple words like military ("mi-li-ta-ry") right without shifting to his British accent ("mi-li-tree").

    It wasn't very good. Django Unchained, Killing Them Softly and Life of Pi are the best movies this year.

    I haven't seen The Master, Amour, The Impossible or Beasts, but I'll be seeing those this week.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Ducard/ Ducard

    Nice to see Mark Boal & ZDT get a major award. Can't really find fault with "Argo" win, but I still think "Lincoln" was a bit better written.