Seven writers have been selected as winners for the 26th annual Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Each writer (or writing team) will receive a $30,000 prize, the first installment of which will be distributed at a gala dinner in Beverly Hills on November 3.
The Fellows are as follows:
Chris Bessounian & Tianna Langham, Los Angeles, Calif.
“Guns and Saris - They’ve been oppressed and brutalized at the bottom of India’s caste system for 3000 years, but now the “untouchable” women of India have found an unlikely source of hope - and she’s armed.
Dion Cook, Altus, Okla.
“Cutter” - After surviving the nightmare of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, Patrice Gasana has made a new life in the United States. A dedicated Miami trauma physician, Patrice lives the American dream with his loving fiancé and her daughter – until his past returns to imperil everything he holds dear.
John MacInnes, Los Angeles, Calif.
“Outside the Wire” - An ex-Marine working in Iraq saves a young, single-mom in US Army from assassination by his powerful employers. Two Americans on the run in the most dangerous place on the planet with hostile insurgents, militiamen, and a private army hot on their tail, in a desperate bid to make it back home.
Matthew Murphy, Culver City, Calif.
“Unicorn” - A by-the-book FBI profiler must track down a serial killer with the help of an illiterate 24-year-old psychic.
Abel Vang & Burlee Vang, Fresno, Calif.
“The Tiger’s Child” - When his father is suddenly killed after being coerced into the CIA's Secret Army, twelve-year-old Tou must decide whether or not to follow in the same footsteps in order to provide for Cheng, his five-year-old brother.
The winners were selected from a record 6,730 scripts submitted for this year's competition.
The competition is open to any individual who has not sold or optioned a screenplay or teleplay for more than $5,000, or received a fellowship or prize that includes a "first look" clause, an option, or any other quid pro quo involving the writer's work.
For more on the Nicholl Fellowship, visit the Academy.