Filmmaker Alex Gibney has been honored with the Writers Guild of America West’s (WGAW) Paul Selvin Award for his screenplay for We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks (pictured), marking the first time a documentary will receive the honor.
The award is named after the WGAW’s late counsel and is given to a WGA member whose script embodies “the spirit of constitutional and civil rights and liberties, which are indispensable to the survival of free writers everywhere,” according to a Guild statement.
“In We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks, Mr. Gibney tackles issues arising out of us living, increasingly, in a surveillance state – from the public’s right to know and the press’ right to publish, to the treatment of whistleblowers,” added WGAW president Christopher Keyser. “In honoring a documentary film with the Paul Selvin Award for the first time, the WGAW acknowledges Mr. Gibney’s singular contribution to the ongoing conversation about the meaning of freedom – a conversation that writers must never allow to go silent.”
Gibney will receive the award during the ceremony for the 2014 Writers Guild Awards West Coast on February 1 in Los Angeles.
Past recipients of the WGAW’s Paul Selvin Award include Eric Roth, Michael Mann, Dustin Lance Black and Tony Kushner.