CIA thrillers 'Argo' and 'Zero Dark Thirty' won top screenplay honours from the Writers Guild of America last night.
The guild’s adapted screenplay award went to Chris Terrio for 'Argo', director Ben Affleck’s tale of the CIA’s daring masquerade of six US diplomats as a Hollywood film crew to rescue them from Iran during the hostage crisis there.
Mark Boal won the prize for original screenplay for 'Zero Dark Thirt'y, director Kathryn Bigelow’s chronicle of the CIA’s manhunt for al Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.
Director Malik Bendjelloul won the documentary award for 'Searching For Sugar Man', his portrait of acclaimed but largely forgotten 1970s musician Rodriguez.
The guild was the last of Hollywood’s major trade unions to weigh in on the year’s top films before next Sunday’s Academy Awards.
'Argo' has emerged as the best-picture favourite for the Oscars after sweeping top prizes at earlier film honours, including the Golden Globes and awards from the Directors Guild of America, the
Screen Actors Guild and the Producers Guild of America.