Aussie scribe wins 2017 Sir Peter Ustinov TV Scriptwriting Award

26 September, 2017 by Jackie Keast

Joe Brukner. 

An Australian writer has won the Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award for the third year running.


The award, presented by the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Foundation, is given to a non-American novice writer under 30 for a half-hour to one-hour drama script.

Joe Brukner, originally from Melbourne, has earned this year’s honour for his script Judas. He will be presented with the prize at the International Emmy Awards in November.

Brukner told IF he has been working on Judas for almost a year now in tandem with other scripts for film and TV.

The synopsis is as follows: “Ever since betraying Jesus Christ, Judas Iscariot has walked the Earth as an immortal. Now living a quiet, secluded life in Venice, California, a gruesome murder will tear him from his exile, forcing him to confront the sins of his past and begin his impossible journey towards redemption.”

Brukner’s prize winnings include $2,500, a trip to New York City and an invitation to the International Emmy Awards Gala.

The writer said it was “truly an honour” to have his work selected for the award.

“From the moment I sat down at my kitchen table in Melbourne and wrote the first word of Judas, the experience of developing this script has been an absolute delight,” he said.

“I look forward to attending the script reading and award ceremony as part of the International Emmy Awards in November.”

Brukner has spent the last few years in the US, where he received an MFA in Dramatic Writing at NYU before moving to LA. He also attended the Australians in Film Writers Room in 2015-16.

Last year, Melburnian Catherine S. McMullen won Sir Peter Ustinov Television Scriptwriting Award for her screenplay Living Metal, while Gabriel Bergmoser, also from Melbourne, won in 2015 for Windmills: Leo.