Menu

Writers in the spotlight: AWG honours writers of The Drover’s Wife, Lion, Hacksaw Ridge, Rosehaven, Deep Water and more at 50th Annual AWGIE Awards

Playwright Leah Purcell has capped off an incredible year of recognition for her play The Drover’s Wife, taking home the top two writing honours at the Australian Writers’ Guild’s 50th Annual AWGIE Awards tonight in Sydney.

Purcell was awarded the 2017 Major Award and the David Williamson Prize for Excellence in Writing for Australian Theatre for her re-imagining of Henry Lawson’s short story The Drover’s Wife, as well as winning the Stage category in a competitive year for theatre.

Over 350 screen and stage writers, industry representatives and special guests gathered to celebrate the 50th year of the Australian Writers’ Guild’s AWGIE Awards, where over 25 Australian writers were recognised for their outstanding contribution to the Australian arts.

At a time when Australian screen content and kids’ TV are under threat, AWG President Jan Sardi took time to reflect on the vital role of the writer and the continued fight to ensure that Australians are able to hear and tell their own stories, from their own perspective and in their own voice.

He honoured the impressive line-up of 2017 nominees and winners and paid tribute to the AWGIE Award’s half-century old tradition of putting writers in the spotlight.

‘For fifty years we have celebrated the best of the best; the unique skills, craft and creativity that only writers can bring, without which there would be nothing,’ he said.

Awards were presented across 20 categories, including film, television, theatre, documentary, children’s television and interactive media.

Among the 2017 AWGIE Award winners were:

In the television categories, winners included:

Winners in the theatre categories included Danny Ginges with Philip Foxman for Atomic in the Music Theatre category, 2015 David Williamson Prize-winning playwright Finegan Kruckemeyer (Where Words Once Were) in the Theatre for Young Audiences category, Anelga Betzien for Egg in the Children’s Theatre category, and joint winners Lachlan Philpott (Michael Swordfish) and Noëlle Janaczewska (Teacup in a Storm) in the Community and Youth Theatre category.

A number of special awards were presented on the night:

The AWG also honoured Hacksaw Ridge, Rake and Jack Irish screenwriter Andrew Knight with the 2017 Australian Writers’ Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award, proudly presented by Foxtel, in recognition of his contribution to the Australian screen industry over more than 30 years. Knight was presented the Award by Foxtel’s Bruce Meagher, with tributes from Sigrid Thornton, Peter Duncan and Andrew Anastasios.

The 50th Annual AWGIE Awards are presented with the support of 50th Anniversary Partners Foxtel and Scripted Ink. and Platinum Partner Media Super.

Read the full list of winners here.

Read the full list of nominees here.


Primary4:51 - 22.9.2017

The 2017 Monte Miller Awards are now open for entries! 🎉 Open to scripts of all genres and formats, the Monte Miller Awards are dedicated to finding the best new scripts from AWG's Association Members. Head to the website for more information:

Australian screenwriting competitions worth entering? This one!!!! https://t.co/fecShHAknc

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

The 2017 Monte Miller Awards are officially open for entries! For more information and to enter head to:… https://t.co/hCLoIqa5H6

Primary4:03 - 22.9.2017

It’s time to polish off those final drafts and put your best script forward as the Australian Writers’ Guild’s 2017 Monte Miller Awards are officially open for entries. Dedicated to uncovering the best new scripts and talents among AWG’s Associate Membership, the 2017 Monte Miller Awards are your opportunity to put your work in the spotlight and showcase your talent to the industry. Find out more at: www.awg.com.au/2017-monte-miller-awards/

Broadening the Horizons – Representing Disability on Screen https://t.co/EAE2zQHPxq https://t.co/xq1lGsxeOd

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild


.@BusStopFilms and @AWG_1 are hosting an event aimed at helping writers craft authentic characters with a disability https://t.co/ycSZU63aE2

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

He made his name in UK comedy, but today Ben Elton wants to #MakeItAustralian. https://t.co/M67Lng0PWU https://t.co/kePFcsCyoq

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild


The #Neighbours script team is proud to tell Aussie stories and employ heaps of Aussie writers! #MakeItAustralianhttps://t.co/LSLZKiRFCd

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild
Primary6:32 - 19.9.2017

'All over Australia, all over the industry, all over the age groups, sexes, aspirations and wider politics, the industry is on a campaigning roll' #MakeItAustralian

Make It Australian - fire, passion and good humour | ScreenHub Australia https://t.co/oJOWPmrXFv #MakeItAustralian

Thank you to all those involved in the #MakeItAustralian Perth Launch. Photos by Bianca Kartawiria. https://t.co/xJaqYOQAg8

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

Wonderful speech for #MakeItAustralian from Shareena Clanton at the Melbourne launch. https://t.co/tFYnZRZAIU

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild
Primary1:21 - 19.9.2017

Primary0:55 - 19.9.2017

Parliamentary film and TV inquiry’s report will focus on jobs and growth https://t.co/g3zTx2QthO

Gillian Armstrong and Marta Dusseldorp on @Lateline last night on the launch of the #MakeItAustralian campaign https://t.co/OgCCpawhAx

Gillian Armstrong: We have hundreds of film schools and drama schools and a lot [of graduates] are going straight to Hollywood #lateline

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

We need Australian content quotas & funding so we can tell our own stories #makeitaustralian and while you're at it… https://t.co/9HEhgtqS1c

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

Gillian Armstrong: "Do we want our kids only finding out about the senior prom and maple syrup on pancakes? #lateline

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

Gillian Armstrong: "I wouldn't be here without government controls and government funding and neither would Nicole Kidman." #lateline

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild

Director Gillian Armstrong: "We need protection of our talent -- but also, our stories are out culture." #lateline

Retweeted by Aus Writers' Guild
Primary4:32 - 18.9.2017

Primary1:39 - 18.9.2017

Joining us tonight at the launch of the #MakeItAustralian campaign? Make sure you're up to date with the latest times and venues around the country: SYDNEY: 6pm, Event Cinemas George Street MELBOURNE: 3pm, ACMI PERTH: 4pm, Luna Cinemas, Oxford Street, Leederville ADELAIDE: 5pm, Media Resource Centre BRISBANE: 6pm, William Galloway Auditorium, QCU HOBART: 5.30pm, Fullers Bookshop

Primary23:44 - 17.9.2017

Primary6:33 - 15.9.2017

Primary5:40 - 15.9.2017

Writers, performers, producers, directors and crew are joining forces to campaign for the future of the screen industry. The campaign will be launched on Monday 18 September at venues around the country. Join Australian Writers' Guild, Australian Directors' Guild, Screen Producers Australia and MEAA by registering yourself to attend the event near you. Events to be held across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Hobart, Perth and Adelaide. #MakeItAustralian

Primary0:07 - 15.9.2017

Entries for the 2018 NSW Premier's Literary Awards are open, including the 2018 Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting and the 2018 Betty Roland Prize for Scriptwriting. Entries close Friday 13 October 2017.

Primary0:11 - 13.9.2017

Screen Australia’s Indigenous Department are calling for Indigenous screen content makers from around the country who are passionate about environmental issues to apply for a special factual initiative – State of Alarm. Previous screen credits are not essential, but applicants are required to submit a pitch video outlining their concept.

Primary6:33 - 12.9.2017

Join us tomorrow night as we chat to one of the nations's best writers, Andrew Bovell. Andrew’s staggering body of work across film, theatre, and television, places him at the very pinnacle of our industry. Andrew is the critically acclaimed writer or co-writer of The Secret River, Lantana, Edge Of Darkness, The Book Of Revelation, Iris, Strictly Ballroom, and Who's Afraid of the Working Class? Andrew, in discussion with playwright and director Brett Cousins, will draw from his 30 years of writing experience, including his journey into the industry, his fight with crippling writers block, and advice on how to achieve excellence in your writing.

Primary1:06 - 12.9.2017

Bus Stop Films and Write Night (AWG) are hosting a free event aiming to help screenwriters craft authentic characters with a disability, confidently. To have a diverse film and TV landscape we need to give writers the tools and confidence to write diverse and authentic stories! Join us for an illuminating keynote by the Guardian's film critic, Luke Buckmaster on the representation of disability in Australian Cinema, followed by a panel discussion with esteemed filmmakers Daniel Monks, Emily Dash, disability arts veteran Alison Richardson and Creative Director of Robot Army Ryan Chamley . Hosted by Genevieve Clay-Smith, Co-Founder of Bus Stop Films and 2015 NSW Young Australian of the year.

Primary1:05 - 12.9.2017

Primary6:29 - 11.9.2017

Primary23:36 - 10.9.2017

Want to learn from the best? Come along Wednesday night and spend an evening with Andrew Bovell, 13 September, 6.45pm, at the Dan O’Connell. Andrew, in discussion with playwright and director Brett Cousins, will draw from his 30 years of writing experience, including his journey into the industry, his fight with crippling writers’ block, and advice on how to achieve excellence in your writing.

Primary6:15 - 8.9.2017

Huddle against the darkness and gather around the fireside in one of Tasmania’s most historic (and haunted) hotels with three of Australia's most prominent genre writers (Vicki Madden, Shayne Armstrong and Shane Krause) and listen to tales that promise to send a chill up your spine and heed ominous words about how to create terrifying tales and sinister stories of your own. You'll uncover the secrets of how and why genre premises live or die in the national and international film and TV industry as well as how to set and write scenes that wreak maximum tension. There will be sweat-inducing tales from the industry to share and then – if you dare – stay the night in one of Tasmania's oldest and most haunted pubs. This unique overnight experience will begin at 4pm (just before twilight) where introductions will be made, followed by a pub meal before retiring to an open fire in an historic convict pub. Next morning (if there is one) there will be one on one meetings with our ghoulish guests to discuss your own project. When: 4pm Saturday 14 October to midday Sunday 15 October 2017 Where: The Ross Hotel, 35 Church Street, Ross, Tasmania (approximately an hour south of Launceston and 1.5 hours north of Hobart) The Tasmanian Genre Writing Retreat is supported by the Tasmanian Government through Screen Tasmania

Primary1:23 - 8.9.2017

Primary1:15 - 8.9.2017

We've got your Friday listening sorted! OzPod has 34 of the best, brightest and most innovative names in podcasting in Australia and from around the world presenting a full day of panels, presentations and workshops. Listen along on ABC Extra or through the ABC listen app. For updates follow @OzPodConference on Twitter or join the conversation using #OzPod2017.

© Australian Writer's Guild 2017. All Rights Reserved.
ACN: 002 563 500

Level 4, 70 Pitt St, Sydney, NSW 2000
t: 02 9319 0339
f: 02 9223 8933
e: admin@awg.com.au