'Avatar,' 'Star Trek' among WGA nominees

10:18 AM PST 01/11/2010 by Gregg Kilday, AP

'(500) Days of Summer,' 'Hangover' also nominated

Some critics may have taken potshots at James Cameron's screenplay for "Avatar," but it has earned a nomination from the Writers Guild of America, which announced nominations for the 2010 WGA Awards on Monday.

Cameron -- who was also nominated by the WGA for "Titanic," though that movie failed to earn a best screenplay Oscar nomination -- will compete for the honor with Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber, nominated for their fractured romance "(500) Days of Summer"; Jon Lucas & Scott Moore for breakout summer comedy "The Hangover"; Mark Boal for his Iraq War study, "The Hurt Locker"; and Joel Coen & Ethan Coen for their modern-day retelling of the story of Job, "A Serious Man."

In the adapted screenplay category, the nominees are "Crazy Heart," screenplay by Scott Cooper, based on the novel by Thomas Cobb; "Julie & Julia," which Nora Ephron adapted from two books, "Julie & Julia" by Julie Powell and "My Life in France," by Julia Child with Alex Prud'homme; "Precious," which Geoffrey Fletcher adapted from Sapphire's novel "Push"; "Star Trek," Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman's reboot of the franchise created by Gene Roddenberry; and Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner's "Up in the Air," their adaptation of Walter Kirn's novel.

Documentary nominees are "Against the Tide," screenplay by Richard Trank, based on original material written by Trank and Rabbi Marvin Hier, the account of an activist who tried to save Jews during the Holocaust; "Capitalism: A Love Story," Michael Moore's foray into economics; the cruelty-to-dolphins study "The Cove" by Mark Monroe; "Earth Days," Robert Stone's account of the beginning of the modern environmentalist movement; "Good Hair," a look at African-American hairstyles, written by Chris Rock & Jeff Stilson, Lance Crouther and Chuck Sklar; and "Soundtrack for a Revolution," written by Bill Guttentag & Dan Sturman, which looks at the music that accompanied the civil rights movement.

The WGA Awards will be handed out Feb. 20 at simultaneous ceremonies at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles and the Hudson Theatre at the Millennium Broadway Hotel in New York.

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This year's WGA noms don't necessarily serve as a harbinger of eventual Oscar noms because several high-profile films in the awards hunt -- such as Nick Hornby's "An Education," Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds," Tom Ford and David Scearce's "A Single Man" and Pete Docter, Bob Peterson and Thomas McCarhty's "Up" -- were not eligible for consideration because they weren't filmed under the WGA's Minimum Basic Agreement or under a collective-bargaining agreement with guilds in Great Britain, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand.
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