Guild leadership award goes to TV vet

This article was corrected on January 28, 2002.
HOLLYWOOD — TV writer Christopher Knopf has been tapped to receive the Edmund H. North Award from the Writers Guild of America West.

The kudo, which honors Guild leadership and service, will be presented March 2 at the 54th annual WGA Awards, with simultaneous ceremonies at the Beverly Hilton and the Pierre Hotel in New York. Past recipients include Mary McCall Jr.; Charles Brackett and Richard Breen; Randall MacDougall; Daniel Taradash; John Furia Jr.; and Frank Pierson, who in 1999 was the last person to receive the award.

“Few have given as much of their time and devotion as Christopher Knopf,” said Victoria Riskin, WGAW prexy. “Because of his efforts on behalf of guild members for the past 40 years, working screen and television writers face a brighter future.”

Knopf’s credits include “Scott Joplin: King of Ragtime,” “Mrs. Sundance,” “The Girl Who Spelled Freedom,” “Baby Girl Scott,” “Peter and Paul,” and the pilot for “The Big Valley.”

He has received ten WGA nominations with three wins, a Christopher Award for “The Girl Who Spelled Freedom,” a Humanitas nomination for “Not My Kid,” an Edgar Allen Poe Special Award for “Cold Night’s Death,” an NAACP Image Award as co-exec producer of “Equal Justice,” and Emmy noms for “The Girl Who Spelled Freedom” and “Loudmouth.”

Knopf joined the guild in 1950 and served as WGAW president from 1965 to 1967 and national chairman of the WGA from 1967 to 1969 and, for the same years, vice president of the Intl. Writers Guild. His committee service includes MBA enforcement; screen credits; TV credits; screen grievance and disciplinary; agent-writer, producer-writer cooperative; affirmative action; strike planning and service; officers nominating; and credits review.

He also served as a trustee of pension and health 1979 to 1981, VP of the Writers Guild Foundation from 1979 to 1989, and a trustee of the Motion Picture Relief Fund from 1957 to 1959.

Knopf received the Morgan Cox Award in 1991.

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