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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.


An interesting new project from our friends at the Australian Writers' Guild! https://t.co/IQwBTRmd3M

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Primary22:25 - 22.11.2017

Find the projects you're looking for at Pathways, the new 'go-to' for world class projects from Australia's premier screenwriters. REGISTER NOW!

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Primary1:22 - 21.11.2017

Australian Writers' Guild announces new online portal to showcase projects to producers https://t.co/skbw6lAeE0 @AWG_1

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Primary1:31 - 20.11.2017

Australian Film Television and Radio School launches Re: Frame training focused on innovation & building your business. Catch the live stream tomorrow with speakers Russel Howcroft, Richard Harris, Chloe Rickard, Kate Montague and Mike Jones. From 3pm Tuesday below:

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Primary2:08 - 17.11.2017

WA: Got an idea for a short film? In this short intensive course – 3 sessions over 3 weeks – you will work with a group of writers to take your story concept from seed to script. You will learn how to plot out your story, develop characters and write your first draft. Find out more below and book at awg.com.au

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Australian Writers’ Guild @AWG_1 launches new online portal for producers https://t.co/bD56NUneUj via @ArtsHub

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Primary22:18 - 15.11.2017

The Australian Writers’ Guild has announced the launch of a new online portal, Pathways Showcase – the new ‘go-to’ for producers looking for Australia’s hottest new scripts and premier screenwriters. Launched yesterday at SPA’s Screen Forever conference, the portal is already showcasing over 80 original projects and dozens of Australia’s best screenwriters.

AWG launches new online portal for producers | ScreenHub Australia https://t.co/ZXwvwd215h

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Introducing PATHWAYS PRIME AND PATHWAYS SHOWCASE, the new 'go-to' for world-class projects from Australia's premier screenwriters, launched today at #ScreenForever. Industry professionals are invited to REGISTER NOW: awgpathways.com.au

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Heads up established playwrights! Applications for the 2018 LYSICRATES PRIZE are now open!! Find out more:… https://t.co/cZN1oztmJK

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Join us tonight as we chat to Gregory Erdstein and Alice Foulcher, the creative team behind the indie hit That’s Not Me, which premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February 2017 and played at Melbourne International Film Festival earlier this year.

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Join us as we chat to Gregory Erdstein and Alice Foulcher, the husband and wife creative team behind the indie hit That’s Not Me, which premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February 2017 and played at Melbourne International Film Festival earlier this year.

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#Melbourne, want to learn more about what it takes to create a hit indie film in Australia? Join us tomorrow night as we chat to Gregory Erdstein and Alice Foulcher, the creators of That's Not Me, which premiered at Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February and played at Melbourne International Film Festival earlier this year to rave reviews! When: Wednesday 8 November 2017, from 6.45 pm Where: The Dan O'Connell Hotel, 225 Canning Street Carlton Tickets: $5 for members, $10 for non-members. RSVP online or pay at the door!

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The 2017 John Hinde Award for Excellence in Science-Fiction Writing was presented on Tuesday 31 October at Brisbane Powerhouse to C.S. McMullen for Awake (Unproduced category) and Cris Jones for The Death and Life of Otto Bloom (Produced category). Photos by Veronica Kopinski.

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A society where sleep is optional and the rich work and play on a 24-hour cycle is the thrilling setting of the winning unproduced script in the 2017 John Hinde Award for Excellence in Science-Fiction Writing, presented last night in Brisbane to C.S. McMullen for her pilot script Awake. ‘As a writer whose first love has always been science-fiction, this award has incredible significance for me, and I am prouder of this than perhaps anything else I’ve won,’ said McMullen, currently in Los Angeles. ‘Thank you so much to the AWG, and the estate of the late John Hinde for this bequest. This is part of a golden age for Australian science-fiction, and I am thrilled to be a part of it.’

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Cris Jones, the screenwriter and director behind the celebrated sci-fi mockumentary The Death and Life of Otto Bloom, was posthumously honoured with the Australian Writers’ Guild’s $10,000 John Hinde Award for Excellence in Science-Fiction Writing last night in Brisbane. Jones, who passed away in September, entered his debut feature film in the John Hinde Award produced category in July, almost a year after the film made its premiere and opened the 65th Melbourne International Film Festival to great applause. Read more:

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Help us keep the Make It Australian campaign on the agenda by sending a short email to your federal MP and Senators. Simply type in your postcode to find your MP, add your details and hit send! Click below to ask your local MP for their support for Australian stories on Australian screens #MakeItAustralian

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Screen Australia are doing a YouTube Live series as part of their Outreach initiative, RSVP now for public live stream #2: all about markets. From travel support FAQs, to which events are up next. No rego required but email your Qs in advance.

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'The Australian screen industry can brace itself for yet another Canberra-led inquiry, this time from the Senate Standing Committee on Environment and Communications. Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young today announced the committee will conduct an inquiry into the Economic and Cultural Value of Australian Content on Broadcast, Radio and Streaming Services'

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