Best Adapted Screenplay
Chris Terrio "Argo"
Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin "Beasts of the Southern Wild"
David McGee "Life of Pi"
Tony Kushner "Lincoln"
David O. Russell "Silver Linings Playbook"
Other Contenders - Les Miserables, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, The Sessions
Commentary - If Lincoln, SLP, and Argo don't get into this category, then the world as we know it has turned upside down. That leaves two slots, and really four contenders. At the moment I am excluding Les Miserables, just because of all the discussion, screenplay seems to always be left out. I am also leaving out the surprise contender of Perks of Being a Wallflower. While the WGA is awesome, and it definitely deserves a nomination, I fear that the older Academy may not respond to its content about teenage angst. So in the last two slots I am going with Life of Pi (which despite some criticism was a huge task to undertake and if WGA thinks its good enough, why not the Academy), and upstart Beasts of the Southern Wild. While Beasts has missed the guilds (Mostly due to ineligibilities), the PGA nod shows the industry is still on this film, and I think it will do better than expected come Thursday morning.
Best Original Screenplay
Michael Haneke "Amour"
Quentin Tarantino "Django Unchained"
Paul Thomas Anderson "The Master"
Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola "Moonrise Kingdom"
Mark Boal "Zero Dark Thirty"
Other Contenders - Rian Johnson "Looper" and John Gatins "Flight"
Commentary - It looks like this year's race could be a rematch between Mark Boal and Quentin Tarantino, but both will face some challenge from the nostalgic Moonrise Kingdom, which like Midnight in Paris last year, is a film that wins hearts. While The Master is slipping a lot in other categories, I still think that the writer's branch, as the WGA did, will come to bat for PTA's controversial film. In the final slot I think that Amour, which could surprise in Best Picture/Best Director, will pull an A Separation, and be the foreign representative. But watch out for Rian Johnson's Looper, which despite its sci-fi premise, has done well on the screenplay circuit this year, and got the WGA nod.