Hacksaw Ridge, Rake and Jack Irish screenwriter Andrew Knight has been announced as the recipient of the 2017 Australian Writers’ Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award, one of the industry’s most prestigious gongs, in recognition of his contribution to the Australian screen industry over more than 30 years.
Starting out writing for classic Australian comedy series such as The D Generation, Fast Forward and Full Frontal, Knight has since gone on to pen some of Australia’s best-loved shows, including the award-winning series Rake, Jack Irish and SeaChange, as well as After the Deluge, Tripping Over, The Broken Shore, The Kettering Incident, Kangaroo Palace, CrashBurn and Bligh.
For the silver screen, he co-wrote the multi award-winning US–Australian war epic Hacksaw Ridge, historical drama The Water Diviner, and recent Sydney Film Festival favourite, the romantic comedy Ali’s Wedding.
Knight said he was honoured and tremendously flattered to be receiving the Award: ‘As a writer you constantly feel like a canary in a mineshaft; unnoticed, ignored and unloved – so it is a great surprise to realise none of this is true.’
Oscar-nominated screenwriter and AWG president Jan Sardi said it is impossible to overstate the impact and influence Knight has had on the Australian film and television industries and on our screen culture.
‘Not only is Andrew prolific, award-winning and one of the most successful screenwriters this country has ever produced, he is also in possession of a uniquely Australian voice and outlook. You only need to have seen an episode of Rake or SeaChange to see that Andrew is very much the voice of Australia on our screens,’ Sardi said.
Knight’s work has received numerous accolades, including AFI, Logie and AWGIE Awards. In 2015 he was presented the AACTA Longford Lyell Award in recognition of his contribution to the Australian screen industry. In 2017 he was nominated for a British Academy Film Award for Hacksaw Ridge, which went on to be nominated for Best Picture at the 2017 Academy Awards.
Knight will be presented the Lifetime Achievement Award by Bruce Meagher at the 50th Annual AWGIE Awards to be held in Sydney on Friday 25 August 2017.
Bruce Meagher, Foxtel’s Group Director of Corporate Affairs, said, ‘Andrew has been a true artistic beacon who has inspired a generation of Australian creative talent over the past three decades. Foxtel believes in the importance of telling uniquely Australian stories and Andrew’s commitment to creating those stories is what has made Australian TV and cinema among the best in the world.’
Awarded since 2015, the Lifetime Achievement Award recognises writers who have made a significant contribution to the Australian screen industry. The Award celebrates the achievements of Australia’s most revered and admired writers, those who have achieved critical and commercial success throughout their career and made significant contributions to our national film and television culture.
The Award is decided by a unanimous vote of the 13 members of the Australian Writers’ Guild National Executive Committee who are all professional writers.
Previous recipients of the Award are Laura Jones and Craig Pearce.
The Australian Writers’ Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award is sponsored by Foxtel.
The 50th Annual AWGIE Awards are presented with the support of 50th Anniversary Partners Foxtel and Scripted Ink. and Platinum Partner Media Super.
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