AACTA Awards 2016 winners: Mel Gibson's redemption story as Hacksaw Ridge dominates

Just like audiences, the film and television industry loves a good redemption story. And it has delivered one with Mel Gibson's Hacksaw Ridge dominating the country's main film and television awards after a decade of Hollywood exile. The intense drama about a conscientious objector turned war hero has won nine Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards including best film, director, lead actor for Andrew Garfield, supporting actor for Hugo Weaving and original screenplay for Robert Schenkkan​ and Andrew Knight. To read more click here.

HACKSAW RIDGE nominated for 7 Critic Choice Awards!

Not only did the war saga Hacksaw Ridge secure mentions in both the best picture and best action movie categories, but Mel Gibson was rewarded with a directing nom, finding a slot alongside his fellow actor-turned-director Denzel Washington for Fences as well as Chazelle, Villeneuve, Jenkins, Hell or High Water's David Mackenzie and Manchester by the Sea's Kenneth Lonergan. To read more, click here.

HACKSAW RIDGE named one of Top Ten Films of the year!

The National Board of review announced today their list of ten best films of the year. To read more, click here.


HACKSAW RIDGE receives 9 nominations including Best Screenplay. To read more, click here.

ALL THE WAY receives 4 Critics Choice Television Award Nominations!

ALL THE WAY has received 4 Critics’ Choice Television Award nominations for Best Movie Made for Television or Limited Series, Best Actor in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series (Bryan Cranston), Best Supporting Actor in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series (Frank Langella) and Best Supporting Actress in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series (Melissa Leo). Winners will be announced on December 11th during the ceremony in Los Angeles, which will be broadcast live on A&E at 8pmET/5pmPT. The Critics’ Choice TV Awards are given by the Broadcast Television Journalists Association.

Schenkkan to attend COP 22 Summit in Marakeesh

I have been invited to be an observer at the 2016 COP 22 Summit in Marakeesh, Morocco. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) entered into force in 1994, aimed at reducing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. The Conference of the Parties (COP) was designated as the supreme governing body of the Convention. This meeting is especially important following as it does on the success of the Paris Agreeement. Here, signatory parties to this historic agreement to avert Global Warming are required to announce how their government will (or will not) meet their goals in reducing harmful emissions. The recent US election will undoubtedly have sent shock waves through the summit.

A Response to the Results of the 2016 Election

The Boy and the Apple Tree

Once upon a time there was a little boy who lived alone in a forest. There wasn’t much to eat there, bugs and things, but there was the apple tree. In the center of the forest stood a beautiful, enormous apple tree.  Its shade was comforting and in the spring when it bloomed the pink blossoms were gorgeous and of course, there were the apples. Delicious! They were the boy’s favorite thing to eat. The problem was the tree was so tall the boy couldn’t climb it and he had to wait for the apples to fall. This was annoying. Eventually he discovered that if he threw his axe into the branches he could knock apples down. It was a little dangerous but the boy was nimble. He felt a little badly about it because he could see he was breaking branches but the tree was so sturdy and the fruit so delicious he soon got over that. But it was a lot of work. One day he was complaining loudly when a voice behind him said, “There’s another way, you know.” He turned to face an enormous serpent. The snake shifted his unpleasant triangular head to regard him with his lidless eyes. “If you cut the tree down, you can have all the apples you want.” “That’s stupid,” the boy said, “it would kill the tree.” “Very true,” conceded the snake, “but you could just cut the trunk a little bit and the tree would lean over.” “The tree would be alright?” “Of course,” the snake hissed reassuringly, “this tree has stood for 240 years!” The boy considered the proposal. There was some risk to be sure but he was always a bold fellow and so he set to work. It took him the better part of two days but when he finished the last cut the tree groaned and cracked and leaned over. Now the boy could eat all the apples he wanted! He would lie on his back and just reach up and cram his mouth full and his belly got big and it gave him the runs but he was happy.  But after a while, he noticed the tree didn’t look so good. Insects had gotten into the cuts and feasted on the heart wood and rot followed the insects and the tree got sick and before long the tree died. The boy felt guilty. Worse, he was hungry. He grew gaunt. At night sometimes he would dream of the tree. One day the serpent found him and killed him and ate him. He was delicious. He tasted faintly of apples.

Raúl Esparza, Aaron Tveit, Kate Baldwin, and More at Dramatists Guild Fund Gala

The Dramatists Guild Fund held its annual benefit, Great Writers Thank Their Lucky Stars: The Presidential Edition, on November 7 at Gotham Hall. The annual event is the most critical fundraising event of the year for the Dramatists Guild Fund, the charitable arm of the Dramatists Guild of America. It featured Nell Benjamin, Mindi Dickstein, Carol Hall, Tom Kitt, Nan Knighton, Robert Schenkkan, Stephen Schwartz, and Stephen Sondheim introducing the stars who brought their work to life onstage. To read more, click here.


The evening celebrated the work of Nell Benjamin, Carol Hall, Tom Kitt, Robert Schenkkan, Stephen Schwartz, and more. To read more, click here.

‘Hacksaw Ridge’ Review: Saving Grace in the Firing Line

Impassioned patriotism and religious conviction constitute the core of “Hacksaw Ridge,” a stirring—and surpassingly violent—dramatization of the life of Desmond T. Doss, the first conscientious objector to receive the Medal of Honor. As an unarmed combat medic in World War II, Cpl. Doss saved the lives of at least 75 fellow infantrymen during a horrific battle on the Japanese-held island of Okinawa. He’s played by Andrew Garfield, whose extraordinary performance turns inner torment into ardent resolve, and a desperate heroism seldom seen on screen. To read more, click here.