The 16th annual Final Draft Awards took place on Tuesday, March 2, during an online ceremony. Hosted by Final Draft president Shelly Mellot, the first female appointed in the 30-year history, many awards contenders in the writing categories were honored in both film and television.

While accepting the award, Sorkin said, “the Zeitgeist crashed into us” and that he had no idea how much about today “The Trial of the Chicago 7” would end up being. This was an added boost to his awards campaign after winning the Golden Globe last Sunday for best screenplay.

Also, Final Draft announced the 2020 Big Break® Screenwriting Contest winners, which received over 10,000 submissions from writers worldwide, a record number for the organization.

The 2020 Big Break® TV award was presented to Mira Z. Barnum for “Beirut,” and the Big Break® Film award was presented to Stacie Gancayco-Adlao for “Clementine.” Winners of the Big Break® Screenwriting Contest receive $10,000 cash, career coaching, and meetings with renowned screenwriters and literary managers.. Over 50 winners have signed to professional representation in recent years, have had their scripts optioned, sold and produced, and work in writer’s rooms across the television landscape.

“Now more than ever, it is important for the industry to discover and nurture new and diverse voices and give them the tools they need to succeed in their careers and in their crafts,” Mellot said.

2021 Final Draft Award Recipients

  • Aaron Sorkin, “The Trial of the Chicago 7” (Netflix) – The Zeitgeist Award (new award)
    presented by Sacha Baron Cohen
  • Sofia Coppola, “On the Rocks” (A24/Apple TV Plus) – Storyteller Award: Film
    presented by Paul Schrader
  • Steve McQueen, “Small Axe” (Amazon Studios) – Storyteller Award: TV
    presented by John Boyega
  • Radha Blank, “The Forty-Year-Old Version” (Netflix) – New Voice Award: Film
    presented by Mary Harron
  • Ramy Youssef, “Ramy” (Hulu) – New Voice Award: TV
    presented by Laith Nakli