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Best in the West Announces 1999 Winners

The Best in the West Screenwriting Competition (BWS) proudly announces the winners for the 1999 competition. The Best in the West Screenwriting Competition acknowledges those outstanding screenplays, which promote and expose the beauty or uniqueness of the West.

A distinguished panel of judges comprised of writers, producers, development executives and managers selected this year’s winners. The Final Judges had to hone over 100 scripts down to a First Place Winner, Runner-up, three Finalist and 25 Honorable Mention in each category--OLD WEST and NEW WEST. Although it was the first year for the The Best in the West Screenwriting Competition, there were entries from all over the US, Italy, Mexico, Australia, Canada . . .

The Final Judges were:

Sophie McMenamin, Assistant Director of Development for Kopelson Entertainment whose credits include The Fugitive, Seven, and Outbreak.

Russell Hollander, Director of Development for Karz Entertainment who has a deal with Disney / Touchstone Pictures.

Ragna Nervik, Literary Manager, who represents screen and TV writers on staff at Columbia/Tri-Star, two screenplays set up at United Artists, and several under option.

THREE of the finalists have gotten MANAGERS -- a direct result from entering the competition and TWO screenplays have been OPTIONED. Now several "Hollywood heavies" will read the winning scripts:

Steve Tisch, producer of Forrest Gump, The Long Kiss Goodnight.

Mark Harris who's produced over 20 feature films including the highly acclaimed Gods and Monsters.

Dana Stevens who wrote City of Angels (starring Nicholas Cage and Meg Ryan) and produced For Love of the Game starring Kevin Costner.

Bob Broder of the Broder-Kurland-Webb-Ufnner Agency represents a select group of highly respected writers, directors and producers.

Scott Rosenberg writer/producer of Beautiful Girls, Con Air.

Akiva Goldsman who wrote The Client, Batman Forever, A Time to Kill, and produced Deep Blue Sea.

Marcie Wright, owner of The Wright Concept, an agent known for negotiating huge deals for her writers.

Dorothea Petrie, produced The Song of the Lark, Caroline, Captive Heart.

THE 1999 WINNERS FOR THE BEST IN THE WEST SCREENWRITING COMPETITION ARE:

FIRST PLACE WINNER: THE HEAVEN BELOW by Jane Ilsa Wells and Ian Ward Ginsburg. Jane Ilsa Wells and Ian Ward Ginsburg's script THE LAST TRAIN won 1st Place in the The Peter Stark Screenwriting Competition in affiliation with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

RUNNER UP: SAVING GRACE by Andrew Helm

THIRD PLACE: GUNFIGHTERS FROM MARS by Larry Newnam. This screenplay also won 2nd place in the 1998 Nevada Screenwriters Competition.

FOURTH PLACE: AMERICAN PROPHET by Arnold Schrager

FIFTH PLACE: HOBBS AND THE KID by John Sharpe. This screenplay has also made it to the finals of the Nichols Fellowship.

The Judges' selection for the NEW WEST CATEGORY are:

FIRST PLACE WINNER: THE MARLBORO MAN by Sheri Keasler.

RUNNER UP: WHITE TRASH ETIQUETTE by Dinah Leavitt.

THIRD PLACE: MOCK ORANGE by Trudy Duisenberg. Trudy Duisenberg's MOCK ORANGE was one of only 20 screenwriters selected for the Squaw Valley Writer's community conference.

FOURTH PLACE: BRO (Bull Riders Only) by Melinda May.

FIFTH PLACE TIED: COLD STREAK by Jan Butran and Alex Dmitriev.

THESE BOOTS ARE MADE FOR DANCING by Mardeene B. Mitchell

Updated: 09/19/1999
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