Honoring original stories is incredibly important in an industry dictated by formula and franchise. Which is why I have a personal affinity for this Oscar category, because almost every year five films are rewarded in this category for trying something different.
What will be the winner this February in Best Adapted Screenplay?
Best Original Screenplay:
- Hell or High Water – Taylor Sheridan
- La La Land – Damien Chazelle
- The Lobster – Yorgos Lanthimos, Efthymis Filippou
- Manchester by the Sea – Kenneth Lonergan
- 20th Century Women – Mike Mills
Will Win: La La Land
Could Win: Manchester by the Sea
Should Win: The Lobster
La La Land will continue to sweep with this category. It seems that the Academy took the chance with this category to honor writer-directors who did not fit into the Best Director category. Yorgos Lanthimos, Mike Mills, and Taylor Sheridan are given nods here, and it feels like a symbolic way of giving them equal credit for their directorial work.
That said, it is the only nomination for 20th Century Women, which lowers its stock (Note: I haven’t been able to catch this film, yet. Look out for a review in the near future). Same goes for The Lobster (which, yes, is my personal choice in this category, even though I don’t think it is as cohesive as Hell or High Water or Manchester by the Sea).
In a lighter year, Manchester by the Sea would probably take four or five awards, including Best Picture. This year, it has to bear the brunt of the seemingly universally acclaimed La La Land. WGAs will solidify this category, but for now give the edge to Chazelle.
As always, thanks for reading!
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—Alex Brannan (@TheAlexBrannan)