If it ain't on the page it ain't in the actors' mouths. Or some applicable rhyme. Of the 20 Lead and Supporting actors on my list, which ones will be told they did it all by themselves and which will see their guidelines in the running. We have 10 open spots and at least 21 scripts with a shot to claim one of them.
With the actors we were following five voting groups. Since the Screen Actors Guild obviously don't have a screenplay category, naturally we will look to the Writers' Guild for support. Not that they did anyone any favors by disqualifying half of the scripts written in 2009, but we will make due with how they lineup anyway with the Broadcast "Film Critics" Association, the Golden Globes, the Chicago Film Critics Association and the BAFTAs. 15 times since 2001 have these five groups all agreed on a nomination, whether it be Original, Adapted or just an overall Best Screenplay or Writer, depending on the year when they did not want to differentiate between a blank page and something that had already been jotted down. And of those 15 times, six were original (Lost In Translation, Good Night and Good Luck, Crash, The Queen, Babel, Juno) and nine were adaptations (A Beautiful Mind, Adaptation, Sideways, Brokeback Mountain, The Departed, No Country For Old Men, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Slumdog Millionaire). Fifteen were nominated. That is great news for Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker) and Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner (Up In The Air). Even better news for them is that since 2001, there has only been one year (2002) when one of these 15 didn't pick up either the Original or Adapted Screenplay Oscar. In 2004 & 2007, both categories won. Could possibly have been a third year to double up if the WGA had not taken Quentin Tarantino (Inglourious Basterds) out of contention. We'll just chalk that up to semantics and consider that a lock as well.