12:47pm PT by Jay A. Fernandez
Dwayne McDuffie and Earl Kress to Receive WGAW Animation Writing Award
Dwayne McDuffie and Earl Kress are set to receive the Writers Guild of America, West Animation Writers Caucus’ 14th annual Animation Writing Award posthumously. The honor recognizes their animation writing work and their efforts to organize animation for the guild.
“This year, animation lost two talented, hard-working people who have given much of themselves and their talent to our field,” said AWC chair Craig Miller. "Dwayne McDuffie was a talented writer and creator of comics and animation who worked hard for others, particularly for minority writers. Earl Kress was a writer whose career included both feature and TV animation and hard work on behalf of all animation writers as a member of the WGA Animation Writers Caucus and the Animation Guild Board of Directors. Both were people I was glad to call friend and colleague, and whose efforts, it can truthfully be said, made all of us the better for them."
Kress wrote for Transformers, Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, The Smurfs, Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, The Little Rascals, The Berenstain Bears, Ghostbusters, Kim Possible and many more series. On the film side, he worked on Disney’s The Fox and the Hound as well as several direct-to-video animated features. In 1995, Kress joined the Animation Guild’s executive board and was elected vice president of the Animation Guild (Local 839) in 2004, a position he held until his death in September.
McDuffie, who died in February, co-founded Milestone Media, which focused on creating black superheroes such as Hardware and Static and multi-cultural storylines. As a comic book author, McDuffie wrote for Marvel’s Fantastic Four and DC’s Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight and Justice League of America, among others. For TV, he wrote for Static Shock, Justice League, Ben 10: Alien Force, Teen Titans and many others.
The award will be presented to McDuffie’s and Kress’ widows, Charlotte (Fullerton) McDuffie and Denise Kress, at the AWC’s 2011 awards ceremony held Thursday tonight at WGAW headquarters. Post honorees include Mike Scully, Al Jean, Michael Reiss, Brad Bird, Linda Woolverton and Stan Berkowitz.