Spike Jonze’s Her and Billy Ray’s Captain Phillips have earned top screenplay honours from the Writers Guild of America.
Winning the prize for original screenplay on Saturday was Her, Jonze’s futuristic exploration of a man’s relationship with his computer, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson as the voice of an operating system.
Ray won for adapted screenplay for Captain Phillips, the Somali pirate saga based on the book A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALS, and Dangerous Days at Sea by Richard Phillips and Stephan Talty. The film, nominated for a best picture Oscar, stars Tom Hanks and Barkhad Abdi, a limo driver-turned actor, who earned a supporting actor Oscar nomination.
Sarah Polley won the documentary award for Stories We Tell, a film about her parents and how the filmmaker was the product of an extramarital affair.
The Writer’s Guild Awards are Hollywood’s final honours before the Academy Awards on March 2.
Her has picked up a number of accolades over the course of awards season, including the Golden Globe for best screenplay, Critics’ Choice award for best original screenplay and the AFI award for movie of the year.
Jonze’s film is nominated for five Academy Awards, including best original screenplay and best picture. This guild victory gives the computer love tale an edge in the journey to the Oscars.
Among the guild’s TV winners:
— Drama series: Breaking Bad, written by Sam Catlin, Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould, Gennifer Hutchison, George Mastras, Thomas Schnauz and Moira Walley-Beckett.
— Comedy series: Veep, written by Simon Blackwell, Roger Drew, Sean Gray, Armando Iannucci, Ian Martin, Georgia Pritchett, David Quantick, Tony Roche and Will Smith.
— New series: House of Cards, written by Kate Barnow, Rick Cleveland, Sam Forman, Gina Gionfriddo, Keith Huff, Sarah Treem and Beau Willimon.