For Variety's special 10 Screenwriters to Watch issue, which usually favors Hollywood talent, I had the opportunity to profile two upcoming scribes. While the two men couldn’t be further in style and personality, they both coincidentally share a interest in geopolitics, post-9/11 realizations about the ways of the world, and scripts that deal with international intrigue (Matthew Michael Carnahan's The Kingdom and Kelley Sane's Rendition). If the industry is going gaga over guys like this and a gal like Helen Crawley, who wrote the wartime "Hearts and Minds", I suspect we'll be seeing more Syrianas and political dramas coming out of Hollywood soon.
I was also happily surprised to see on the list foreign talents, Aussie rocker Nick Cave (The Proposition) and Brit playwright Martin McDonagh ("The Beauty Queen of Leenane") and a big shout out to Craig Zahler, my NYU film school alumn. Congrats Craig!