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‘Nomadland,’ ‘One Night in Miami,’ ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ Named Finalists for 2021 Scripter Awards

”First Cow“ and ”Bad Education“ were also nominated for the award, which goes to the screenwriter and the author of the material on which the film or television program is based


“Nomadland,” “One Night in Miami,” “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “First Cow” and “Bad Education” have been nominated for the 2021 USC Libraries Scripter Awards, which are given out every year to a literary adaptation and the source material from which it is taken.

The nomination for “Ma Rainey,” for example, goes to both screenwriter Ruben Santiago-Hudson and to the late playwright August Wilson, from whose work the film was drawn.

In the television category, the nominees were episodes of “The Good Lord Bird,” “Normal People,” “The Plot Against America,” “The Queen’s Gambit” and “Unorthodox.”

The finalists were chosen by a jury from 87 film and 65 episodic series adaptations. “The Father,” “News of the World” and “I’m Thinking of Ending Things” are among the films in the running for the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar that were not chosen by the Scripter jury.

Since 2000, about two-thirds of the Scripter nominees have gone on to receive Oscar nominations, with four of the five doing so last year. The Scripter winner has gone on to win the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay eight times in the last 10 years, but it hasn’t done so in the last two years. In that time, the Scripter winners were “Leave No Trace” and “Little Women,” while the Oscars were won by “BlacKkKlansman” and “Jojo Rabbit.”

The winners will be announced at an online ceremony on March 13.

The finalists:

Film adaptation:

• Mike Makowsky for “Bad Education” based on the New York magazine article “The Bad Superintendent” by Robert Kolker
• Jon Raymond and Kelly Reichardt for “First Cow” based on the novel “The Half-Life” by Jon Raymond
• Screenwriter Ruben Santiago-Hudson and playwright August Wilson for “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”
• Chloé Zhao for “Nomadland” based on the nonfiction book “Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century” by Jessica Bruder
• Screenwriter and playwright Kemp Powers for “One Night in Miami”

Episodic series adaptation:

• Mark Richard and Ethan Hawke, for the episode “Meet the Lord,” from “The Good Lord Bird,” based on the novel by James McBride
• Sally Rooney and Alice Birch for the fifth episode of “Normal People,” based on the novel by Sally Rooney
• Ed Burns and David Simon for the sixth episode of “The Plot Against America,” based on the novel by Philip Roth
• Scott Frank for the episode “Openings,” from “The Queen’s Gambit,” based on the novel by Walter Tevis
• Anna Winger for the first episode of “Unorthodox,” based on the autobiography “Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots” by Deborah Feldman