New York and Los Angeles – The Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) and Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) have launched their 2010 Writers Guild Awards award season with a collective call for submissions for the sixth annual WGA Documentary Screenplay Award.

Submissions for the Guilds’ top doc award, recognizing outstanding achievement in documentary feature writing, may be received from September 10 through December 3, 2009.

Documentary screen nominees are set to be announced, in addition to Original and Adapted Screenplay award nominees, on January 11, 2010. The WGA Documentary Screenplay Award will be presented at the upcoming 2010 Writers Guild Awards slated for Saturday, February 20, 2010, at simultaneous ceremonies hosted in New York and Los Angeles .

First presented in 2005 to spotlight the writer’s primary role in the collaborative creative process of documentary filmmaking, past winners of the WGA Documentary Screenplay Award include writer-directors Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me in 2005), two-time winner Alex Gibney (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room in 2006; Taxi to the Dark Side in 2008), Amy Berg (Deliver Us From Evil in 2007), and most recently Ari Folman for Waltz with Bashir at the 2009 Writers Guild Awards this past February.

Established to recognize that the majority of today’s non-fiction films are, in fact, written, the WGA Documentary Screenplay Award continues to highlight both Guilds’ increased industry outreach efforts to build a viable and diverse community of nonfiction writers, with the ultimate goal of bringing more compelling documentaries and other non-fiction films under a Writers Guild contract.

Qualifications for WGA Documentary Screenplay Award eligibility include:

  • Documentaries submitted for entry must contain an on-screen writing credit and have been exhibited theatrically in either New York or Los Angeles for one week in 2009.

  • The credited writers of these documentaries are required to join the WGAW’s Nonfiction Writers Caucus or WGAE Nonfiction Writers Caucus in order to be considered.

  • Scripts need not be written under WGA jurisdiction.

  • Scripts must be feature length (over 40 minutes).

  • Documentaries that received their first public exhibition on broadcast or cable television are not eligible for WGA screen awards.

  • Foreign-language films are eligible, provided they have English-language subtitles.

  • Films covered by the International Alliance of Writers Guilds (IAWG) will also be considered for competition.

The 2010 Writers Guild Awards will be held on Saturday, February 20, 2010, at ceremonies held simultaneously in New York and Los Angeles , where the event will be at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel.

Further inquiries about the WGA Documentary Screenplay Award may be directed to Nancy Hathorne in the WGAE Awards Dept. at 212-767-7812, email:  or Melissa Gage in the WGAW Awards Dept. at (323) 782-4571, email: mgage@wga.org.

For more information about the 2010 Writers Guild Awards submission process, guidelines, and official entry forms, please visit www.wgaeast.org or www.wga.org.

For media press inquiries about the 2010 Writers Guild Awards New York show, please contact Sherry Goldman in the WGAE Press Office at (718) 224-4133 or email: ; or visit online at: www.wgaeast.org.

For media inquiries about the 2010 Writers Guild Awards Los Angeles show, please contact Gregg Mitchell in the WGAW Communications Department at: (323) 782-4574, email: , or visit online at: www.wga.org.

The Writers Guild of America , East (WGAE) and Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) are labor unions representing writers in motion pictures, television, cable, new media, and broadcast news. The Guilds negotiate and administer contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of their members; conduct programs, seminars, and events on issues of interest to writers; and present writers’ views to various bodies of government. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, East, visit www.wgaeast.org. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, West, visit www.wga.org.