Nicholl, Goldwyn competitions pick finalists

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The Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting and the Samuel Goldwyn Writing Awards Competition announced their 2006 finalists Thursday as 15 screenplays were cited between the two programs.

The 21st annual Nicholl Fellowships, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, awards as many as five $30,000 fellowships per year.

Its finalists are "Abilene," written by Michael Raymond; "Armored," James V. Simpson; "Beatrice Creek," Eric J. Litra; "The Free Republic of Bobistan," Arthur M. Jolly; "Mr. Burnout," Eric T. Gravning; "Palau Rain," Stephanie Lord; "Peepers," Clark E. Morrow; "10 Day Contract," Josh D. Schorr; "38 Mercury," Alfred E. Carpenter and Mark A. Matusof; and "Tides of Summer," Scott K. Simonsen.

The Goldwyn Awards, presented by the Samuel Goldwyn Foundation, will result in five prizes, ranging from $1,000-$15,000.

Its finalists are "Behind Hope," written by Don Cabreana; "Flying Start," Andrew Cypiot; "Burning Down Phoenix," Brian A. Larsen; "The Sisters Crofton," Angela Mrema; and "The White Zebra," Nick Pasto.

The finalists for the Goldwyn Awards, which are open to students from the eight University of California campuses, were selected from more than 100 submissions. The winners, who will be honored Oct. 30 at UCLA in Westwood, will be chosen by a jury consisting of screenwriter Eric Roth, producer Lorne Michaels, film critic Leonard Maltin and writer-director-producer Leonard Stern.

The finalists from the Nicholl Fellowships ? 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 ? were selected from 4,899 scripts.

The winners will be chosen by the Nicholl Committee, chaired by writer Susannah Grant and composed of writers Naomi Foner, Fay Kanin, Hal Kanter and Dan Petrie Jr., cinematographers John Bailey and Steven Poster, editor Mia Goldman, actor Eva Marie Saint, executive Bill Mechanic, producers Gale Anne Hurd, David Nicksay, Bob Shapiro and Buffy Shutt and agent Ron Mardigian.

Fellowships are awarded with the understanding that the recipients will each complete a feature-length screenplay during the fellowship year. The Academy acquires no rights to the works of Nicholl fellows and does not involve itself commercially in any way with their completed scripts.
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