Meet Graham Moore, the Oscar-Winning Screenwriter Who Told Kids to "Stay Weird"

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Graham Moore

'The Imitation Game' screenwriter is also a New York Times best-selling author.

Graham Moore went home with the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay, but he walked off the Oscar stage on Sunday night with another, unofficial, award: most moving acceptance speech

During his speech,The Imitation Game screenwriter admitted to attempting suicide at the age of 16 because he felt like he "did not belong." Moore then dedicated his win to kids who feel out of place.

"And now I'm standing here," Moore said. "And so I would like for this moment to be for that kid out there who feels like she's weird or she's different or she doesn't fit in anywhere: Yes you do. I promise you do. Stay weird, and then when it's your turn, and you are the one standing on this stage, please pass this message on." 

Moore's screenplay, based on the biography Alan Turing: The Enigma, won a place on the 2011 Black List for Hollywood's best unproduced scripts. The movie was released three years later, with Benedict Cumberbatch playing Turing and a supporting cast that featured Keira Knightley and Mark Strong.

The Columbia University grad is relatively new to the Hollywood scene — The Imitation Game was his first feature-length screenplay — but he is already a New York Times best-selling author. His book, The Sherlockian, follows Sherlock Homes creator Arthur Conan Doyle during a time when he had to deal with angry readers after having killed off the beloved detective.  

During the The Hollywood Reporter Oscar Screenwriters Roundtable, Moore talked about the advice he received from a friend before visiting the set for his first movie. "He was like, There is one simple thing you have to remember: You're the writer on set, shut the f--k up."

In a post-win interview backstage, Moore said that since he was a teenager he has been "obsessed" with Turing.

Moore, who has battled depression since his suicide attempt, also claims to feeling a personal connection to the WWII code-breaker, who killed himself at the age of 41. "I think we all feel like weirdos for different reasons," he said. "Alan had his share of them and I had my own, and that’s what always moved me so much about his story."