The Write Stuff: Contenders for Best Screenplay at the 2022 Oscars

The Academy Awards: Honoring the Art of Screenwriting

The Academy Awards, famously known as the Oscars, celebrates the brilliance and creativity of the film industry. One vital component of a successful motion picture is the screenplay, which serves as the blueprint for bringing stories to life on the big screen. The Academy acknowledges the importance of screenwriters by recognizing their achievements in two separate categories: Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay. In this article, we will explore the contenders for these prestigious awards at the 2022 Oscars, examining the frontrunners and analyzing the odds for each category.

Best Original Screenplay Nominees: A Showcase of Originality

The category of Best Original Screenplay recognizes exceptional storytelling that originates from the minds of the screenwriters themselves. This year, one standout contender is ‘Licorice Pizza,’ written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. Set in the 1970s, the film captures the essence of the era and features captivating performances by newcomers Cooper Hoffman and Alana Haim. With five nominations to his name, Anderson is a seasoned writer who has previously brought us acclaimed works such as ‘Boogie Nights’ and ‘There Will Be Blood.’ ‘Licorice Pizza’ emerges as the favorite in this category, with -165 odds at BetMGM.

Another notable contender is ‘Belfast,’ a personal coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of Northern Ireland in the late 1960s. Written and directed by Kenneth Branagh, the film delves into the experiences of the protagonist amidst the Troubles, a tumultuous period marked by conflict between Catholics and Protestants. The compelling narrative of ‘Belfast’ makes it a strong competitor for the Best Original Screenplay award, with +160 odds.

Adam McKay’s ‘Don’t Look Up’ takes a satirical approach to explore themes of impending doom and human indifference. With a star-studded cast including Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, and Meryl Streep, this thought-provoking film depicts a world on the brink of catastrophe. Although ‘Don’t Look Up’ tackles serious issues in a satirical manner, it faces longer odds at +700.

Other contenders in the Best Original Screenplay category include ‘King Richard,’ written by Zach Baylin, and ‘The Worst Person in the World,’ penned by Eskil Vogt and Joachim Trier. While these films may be considered long shots, they contribute to the diverse range of stories presented in this highly competitive category.

Best Adapted Screenplay Nominees: Exploration of Literary Works

The Best Adapted Screenplay category celebrates the successful translation of literary works onto the silver screen. This year, one adaptation stands out as a frontrunner, ‘The Power of the Dog,’ written and directed by Jane Campion. Based on the captivating western novel by Thomas Savage, this gripping film immerses the audience in the rugged landscapes of Montana in the 1920s. Campion’s masterful storytelling and faithful adaptation have earned ‘The Power of the Dog’ -500 odds at BetMGM.

‘CODA’ brings a heartwarming and inspiring story to the forefront, centering around a young woman with dreams of pursuing a career in music. However, her journey is complicated by the fact that she comes from a small fishing village and has two deaf parents. Sian Heder skillfully adapted the screenplay from the French film ‘La Famille Belier,’ resulting in a moving and powerful narrative. ‘CODA’ poses a significant challenge to ‘The Power of the Dog,’ with +650 odds.

‘The Lost Daughter,’ a film written and directed by Maggie Gyllenhaal, draws from the novel of the same name by Elena Ferrante. Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut offers a thought-provoking exploration of motherhood and identity. Although ‘The Lost Daughter’ is considered an underdog in this category, it has managed to secure a nomination and holds +800 odds.

‘Dune’ embarks on a grand cinematic adventure, adapting Frank Herbert’s monumental science fiction novel for the silver screen. Directed by Denis Villeneuve and written by Jon Spaihts, Villeneuve, and Eric Roth, this visually stunning adaptation captivates audiences with its epic storytelling. Despite its ambitious scope, ‘Dune’ faces longer odds at +1200.

Another notable adaptation is ‘Drive My Car,’ based on a short story by the prolific Japanese writer Haruki Murakami. Ryusuke Hamaguchi and Takamasa Oe masterfully bring Murakami’s tale to life, showcasing their skills as storytellers. However, ‘Drive My Car’ stands as the outsider in this category, with +1400 odds.


The 2022 Oscars present an exciting lineup of nominees in the Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay categories. Films such as ‘Licorice Pizza’ and ‘The Power of the Dog’ have emerged as frontrunners, captivating audiences with their unique storytelling approaches. However, the competition remains fierce, with each nominee bringing their own creative flair to the screen. As the Oscars approach, all eyes will be on these talented screenwriters, eager to see who will be honored for their contributions to the world of cinema.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the purpose of the Academy Awards?

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, aim to recognize and celebrate excellence in the film industry. They honor the exceptional talent and creativity of the individuals who contribute to the creation of outstanding motion pictures.

2. How are the screenwriting categories divided at the Oscars?

The screenwriting categories at the Oscars are divided into Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay. The former acknowledges exceptional storytelling originating from the minds of the screenwriters, while the latter celebrates successful adaptations of literary works.

3. Who are some notable contenders in the Best Original Screenplay category?

Notable contenders in the Best Original Screenplay category at the 2022 Oscars include Paul Thomas Anderson for ‘Licorice Pizza,’ Kenneth Branagh for ‘Belfast,’ and Adam McKay for ‘Don’t Look Up.’ Each of these screenwriters has brought unique and compelling narratives to the big screen.

4. What is the significance of Best Adapted Screenplay?

The Best Adapted Screenplay category honors the successful translation of literary works into film. It recognizes the skill and creativity required to maintain the essence of a story while adapting it for the visual medium.

5. Which literary works have been adapted into films in the Best Adapted Screenplay category?

This year, the Best Adapted Screenplay category features adaptations from a variety of literary works. These include ‘The Power of the Dog,’ based on a novel by Thomas Savage, ‘CODA,’ adapted from the French film ‘La Famille Belier,’ ‘The Lost Daughter,’ based on a novel by Elena Ferrante, ‘Dune,’ adapted from Frank Herbert’s sci-fi novel, and ‘Drive My Car,’ based on a short story by Haruki Murakami.

Note: This article has been written for informational purposes only and does not endorse or promote any form of gambling or betting.

Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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