Borat Gets Writer's Guild Nomination

Posted on January 11, 2007

In a bit of a surprise, the film Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan has been nominated for a Writer's Guild Award. The script was mostly improvised on the spot, so it's an odd selection for a possible writing award.

Box office sensation Borat, a largely improvised faux documentary about a boorish Kazakh journalist, gained more Oscar momentum on Thursday as it was nominated with four other comedies for the 2006 Writers Guild of America Awards. "Borat" star Sacha Baron Cohen and three collaborators will vie for best adapted screenplay against the writers of two other comedies, "The Devil Wears Prada" and "Thank You For Smoking," and two deadly serious dramas, "Little Children" and "The Departed."

Two more comedies, "Little Miss Sunshine" and "Stranger Than Fiction," were nominated for best original screenplay along with three dramas -- the globe-spanning saga "Babel," royal family portrait "The Queen" and the September 11 thriller "United 93."

The list comes out less than two weeks before nominations for the Academy Awards, Hollywood's top honours, are announced. Due to overlapping membership with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences which oversees the Oscars, the WGA awards are regarded as a key bellwether for a film's Oscar chances, especially in the screenplay categories. All the writers who made the cut this year are first-time WGA nominees, a guild spokesman said.

We think Thank You For Smoking should win for Best Adapted Screenplay. We think Stranger Than Fiction should win for Best Original Screenplay, but the award will probably go to either Little Miss Sunshine or The Queen.

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