The HUMANITAS Prize which honors film and television writers whose work inspires compassion, hope, and understanding in the human family, has named fifty-eight film and television writers as finalists for the 44th Annual HUMANITAS Prize. All Prize winners will be announced at The 44th Annual HUMANITAS Prize event on Friday, February 8, 2019 at The Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA.
Six college students have also been named as finalists for The David and Lynn Angell College Comedy Fellowship and The Carol Mendelsohn College Drama Fellowship. The winning writers in each category will be awarded $20,000 in prize money.
HUMANITAS will also honor Marta Kauffman with The Kieser Award and Kenya Barris with the VOICE FOR CHANGE Award.
Marta Kauffman is a critically acclaimed writer/director/producer. She won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series for Friends, a series she co-created. She also co-created HBO’s Dream On, was the co-producer for NBC’s Veronica’s Closet, and is the co-creator of Netflix’s Grace and Frankie.
Kenya Barris is also a critically acclaimed writer/producer and the creator of ABC’s Black-ish and Grown-ish. He won The HUMANITAS Prize for Black-Ish: “Hope” in 2017. He won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series in 2016/17. He has received three nominations for Outstanding Comedy Series at the Primetime Emmy Awards.
Since its inception in 1974, The HUMANITAS Prize has awarded over $3.5 million to more than 360 deserving television and motion picture writers whose work examines what it means to be a fully realized human being in a world struggling with racism, terrorism, sexism, ageism, anti-Semitism, political polarization, religious fanaticism, extreme poverty, violence, and unemployment. By deeply exploring the cultures, lifestyles, sexual orientations, political views, and religious beliefs of people who are very different from ourselves, we can dissolve the walls of ignorance and fear that separate us from one another.
All winners, except for those in the Independent Feature Film and College Fellowship categories, designate a non-profit focused on nurturing the next generation of writers to receive their earnings. Past recipients have included Young Storytellers, Film2Future, P.S. Arts, The Heidelberg Project, Rosie’s Theatre Kids, International Documentary Association, and Inside Out Writers.
“HUMANITAS enjoyed an embarrassment of riches this year,” said HUMANITAS President Ali LeRoi, “There were so many incredible submissions from such gifted writers.”
44th Annual HUMANITAS Prize Finalists
Drama Feature Film Category
BLACK PANTHER Written by Ryan Coogler & Joe Robert Cole, Based on the Marvel Comics by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
BOY ERASED Screenplay by Joel Edgerton, Based on the memoir Boy Erased by Garrard Conley
ON THE BASIS OF SEX Written by Daniel Stiepleman
WHAT THEY HAD Written and Directed by Elizabeth Chomko
Comedy Feature Film Category
BOUNDARIES Written and Directed by Shana Feste
CRAZY RICH ASIANS Screenplay by Peter Chiarelli and Adele Lim, Based on the Novel Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
EIGHTH GRADE Written and Directed by Bo Burnham
LOVE, SIMON Screenplay by Elizabeth Berger & Isaac Aptaker, Based on the Novel Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Family Feature Film Category
CHRISTOPHER ROBIN Screenplay by Alex Ross Perry and Tom McCarthy and Allison Schroeder, Story by Greg Brooker and Mark Steven Johnson, Based on the characters created by A.A. Milne and E.H. Shepard
INCREDIBLES 2 Written and Directed by Brad Bird
ISLE OF DOGS Screenplay by Wes Anderson, Story by Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman, and Kunichi Nomura
MARY POPPINS RETURNS Screenplay by David Magee, Screen Story by David Magee & Rob Marshall & John DeLuca, Based upon the Mary Poppins stories by P.L. Travers
Independent Feature Film Category
BRIAN BANKS Written by Doug Atchison
LAUGH OR DIE Screenplay by Heikki Kujanpää and Mikko Reitala
SORRY TO BOTHER YOU Written and Directed by Boots Riley
THE GRIZZLIES Written by Moira Walley-Beckett and Graham Yost
THE RIDER Written and Directed by Chloé Zhao
TRANSMILITARY Concept by Fiona Dawson, Written by Jamie Coughlin and Gabriel Silverman, Directed by Gabriel Silverman, Co-Directed by Fiona Dawson
STOLEN DAUGHTERS: KIDNAPPED BY BOKO HARAM Written and Produced by Karen Edwards, Directed by Gemma Atwal
THE FOURTH ESTATE, “Part 3: American Carnage” Directed by Liz Garbus and Jenny Carchman, Produced by Liz Garbus, Jenny Carchman, Justin Wilkes
THE PRICE OF FREE Story by Davis Guggenheim, Derek Doneen, Sarah Anthony, Directed by Derek Doneen, Produced by Davis Guggenheim and Sarah Anthony
60-minute Drama Category
GOD FRIENDED ME, “Pilot” Written by Steven Lilien & Bryan Wynbrandt
ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK, “Be Free” Written by Brian Chamberlayne
THE GOOD DOCTOR, “More” Written by David Shore & Lloyd Gilyard Jr.
THIS IS US, “This Big, Amazing, Beautiful Life” Written by Kay Oyegun
30-minute Comedy Category
DEAR WHITE PEOPLE, “Volume 2: Chapter VIII” Written by Jack Moore
ONE DAY AT A TIME, “Hello, Penelope” Written by Michelle Badillo & Caroline Levich
THE GOOD PLACE, “Jeremy Bearimy” Written by Megan Amram
THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL, “Mid-way to Mid-town” Written and Directed by Amy Sherman-Palladino
Children’s Teleplay Category
ALEXA & KATIE, “Winter Formal, Part 2” Written by Matthew Carlson
MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC, “Surf and/or Turf” Written by Brian Hohlfeld
MUPPET BABIES, “You Say Potato, I Say Best Friend” Written by Laura Sreebny
Z-O-M-B-I-E-S Written by David Light & Joseph Raso, Based on Zombies & Cheerleaders Written by David Light & Joseph Raso
The David and Lynn Angell College Comedy Fellowship
BAND OF MOTHERS – Sabrina Brennan (USC)
FERNANDO – Adam Lujan (NYU)
HEAD CASE – Ellie Goodman (Northwestern University)
The Carol Mendelsohn College Drama Fellowship
RUE PIGALLE – Jessica Shields (Columbia University)
THE BARGEMAN – Joe Hemphill (Boston University)
WILCOX PARK – Omar Willis (USC)