'The Hours' wins USC Scripter Award

March 17, 2003 at 12:52 PM
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LOS ANGELES, March 17 (UPI) -- Screenwriter David Hare and author Michael Cunningham won the 15th USC Scripter Award for the Oscar-nominated movie "The Hours."

Hare is nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for his adaptation of Cunningham's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel about novelist Virginia Woolf and two other women whose lives are deeply affected by her writing.

The University of Southern California presents the Scripter each year to honor the best movie adaptations of previously published works. The award, given last Saturday, recognizes both the screenwriters and the authors of the original novel or novellas upon which the screenplay is based.

The other Scripter nominees this year were: "About Schmidt" (Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor, screenwriters, Louis Begley, author); "Adaptation" (Charlie Kaufman, screenwriter, Susan Orlean, author, "The Orchid Thief"); "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" (Frances Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Stephen Sinclair and Peter Jackson, screenwriters, J.R.R. Tolkien, author); "The Pianist" (Ronald Harwood, screenwriter, Wladyslaw Szpilman, author, "Death of a City").

Of the five Scripter nominees, only three -- "Adaptation," "The Hours" and "The Pianist" are also up for the adapted screenplay Oscar. The other two Oscar nominees are "About a Boy" (Peter Hedges and Chris Weitz & Paul Weitz) and "Chicago" (Bill Condon).

The Scripter has not been a reliable indicator of eventual Oscar success.

Of the 14 previous USC Scripter Award winners, only four have gone on to win the Oscar. Akiva Goldsman's adaptation of Sylvia Nasar's "A Beautiful Mind" won both awards last year. "L.A. Confidential" (1997), "Sense and Sensibility" (1995) and "Schindler's List" (1993) also went on to win adapted screenplay Oscars after winning the Scripter Award.

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