By Zona Marie Tan

In an evening of undrafted thank yous, the Plaza Ballroom at Melbourne’s Regent Theatre played host to the 41st AWGIE Awards on Friday night as the industry’s most talented wordsmiths received accolades for their screen work.

The evening’s top awards were taken home by the controversial mini series, Underbelly. Ironically, as the series is banned in Victoria and no clips were allowed to be screened, host Bryan Dawe prompted Victorian guests in the audience to turn their heads away from the stage as Andrew Denton, Tim Pye and Katherine Thomson presented an R-rated radio adaptation of the series. Underbelly‘s Peter Gawler, Greg Haddrick and Felicity Packard received the Best Original TV Mini Series and the 2008 Major AWGIE Award Peer Recognition Prize.

Another big winner of the night was The Black Balloon, where in director Elissa Down’s absence, Jimmy the Exploder appeared on stage to receive the Best Original Feature Film award.

Man of the night, Doug MacLeod took home the most silver nibs for Dogstar in the Children’s Television – C Classification; the inaugural John Hinde Award for Science Fiction and the Fred Parsons Award for Contribution to Australian Comedy.

The top fellowship prizes of $25,000 in cash went to John Alsop as recipient of the FOXTEL Fellowship for Excellence in Television Writing; while Andrew Denton presented the Kit Denton Fellowship award and "some of my father’s gin" to Suzie Miller.

2008 AWGIE winners

Richard Lane Award for Service and Dedication to the Australian Writers’ Guild

Mark Poole

Monte Miller Award Long Form (for un-produced script over 30 minutes by Associate member)
The Insect King by Priscilla Cameron

Monte Miller Award Short Form (for un-produced script under 30 minutes by Associate member)
Running by Rebecca Glenn

Children’s Television – C Classification
Man Bites Dog, Dogstar by Doug MacLeod

Short Film
Hugo by Rachel Bowen

Theatre for Young Audiences
Stories in the Dark by Debra Oswald

Community and Youth Theatre
Royal Affair by Michael Costello

Music Theatre
Everything’s F***ed by Sean Peter

Radio Adaptation
Fragments of Hong Kong by Katherine Thomson

Interactive Media
Iceman the Story of Ötzi – Who Iced Ötzi? by Caleb Lewis

John Hinde Award for Science Fiction
Doug MacLeod

Dorothy Crawford Award Recognising Outstanding Contribution to the Profession of Scriptwriting
Liz Jones

FOXTEL Fellowship for Excellence in Television Writing
John Alsop

Documentary – Public Broadcast
The Fibros and the Silvertails by Paul Oliver

Comedy Sketch or Light Entertainment
Newstopia, Episode 8, Series One by Michael Ward with Richard Marsland, Gary McCaffrie and Shaun Micallef

Comedy Situation or Narrative
Death Wish, Chandon Pictures by Rob Carlton

Television Serial
Home and Away, Episode 4498 by Margaret Wilson

Television Series
Against The Wall (Part 2), All Saints by Sean Nash

Telemovie Original
The Informant by Greg Haddrick

Television Mini Series Original
Underbelly by Peter Gawler, Greg Haddrick and Felicity Packard

Fred Parsons Award for Contribution to Australian Comedy
Doug MacLeod

Kit Denton Fellowship for courage and excellence in Performance Writing
Suzie Miller

Television Mini Series Adaptation
East West 101 by Kristen Dunphy, Michael Miller, Kris Mrksa, Michelle Offen and Kris Wyld

Beyond the Neck by Tom Holloway

Feature Film Adaptation
Disgrace by Anna-Maria Monticelli

Feature Film Original
The Black Balloon by Elissa Down and Jimmy the Exploder

2008 Major AWGIE Award and Copyright Agency Limited Peer Recognition Prize
Underbelly by Peter Gawler, Greg Haddrick and Felicity Packard

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