Listen: Writers Celebrate
Writers Celebrate WGA’s New Contract and Humanitas Wins in Epic Toast
• Writers celebrated their Humanitas wins and the end of the 148-day WGA strike in an evening of celebration at Hollywood nightclub Avalon.
• Craig Mazin, Amy Sherman-Palladino, Tyler Perry, Cooper Raiff, Guillermo del Toro, and Patrick McHale were recipients of this year’s Humanitas Awards.
• The WGA was honored with the Voices for Change Award, accepted by President Meredith Stiehm and outgoing President Michael Winship.
• Initiatives such as the Humanitas Groceries for Writers program were recognized.
• Speakers Ondi Timoner and Sabina Vajrača shared inspiring personal stories of resilience.
• It was a night of rewarding successes for writers in their ongoing fight for a thriving writing profession.
It was a night filled with celebration, promise, and overflowing drinks as writers came together to toast their victories at the 2023 Humanitas Prizes. Not only did they celebrate their Humanitas wins, but they also rejoiced over a new deal with the AMPTP, marking the official end of the summer-long writers’ strike.
To support the Local 11 Unite Here hotel workers still on strike, the event was held at the Hollywood nightclub Avalon, a departure from its usual hotel ballroom location. The crowd shouted support when co-MCs Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair announced the cause behind the venue change.
The winners of this year’s Humanitas awards were announced in August, a departure from the usual onstage reveal. Among the esteemed recipients were Craig Mazin for “The Last of Us,” Amy Sherman-Palladino, Joan Rater and Tony Phelan, Tyler Perry, Cooper Raiff, Guillermo del Toro and Patrick McHale, Hernan Barangan, Sabina Vajrača, and Ondi Timoner. While Perry and Sherman-Palladino couldn’t attend due to the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike, the celebrations continued.
The WGA received the prestigious 2023 Voices for Change Award, accepted by WGA West president Meredith Stiehm and outgoing WGA East president Michael Winship. The award recognized the organization’s commitment to securing higher wages and sustainable workplace conditions. Throughout the night, various humanitarian initiatives were also acknowledged, including the Humanitas’ Groceries for Writers program, which provided much-needed support to writers during the 148-day strike, making it the second-longest in WGA history.
WGA leaders, after apologizing for the lack of response to the Israel-Hamas conflict, focused on the positive outcome of their battle with the AMPTP. Stiehm and Winship expressed their gratitude for the recognition and support from the guild members. Stiehm emphasized the courage and effort all members showed during the strike, regardless of the uncertain outcome.
The event also featured powerful speeches from creators Timoner and Vajrača, who shared personal stories of inspiration and resilience. Timoner spoke about her film and the support she received, while Vajrača reflected on her experience as a young refugee and the importance of understanding the stories we consume.
It was truly a night to remember as writers celebrated their victories, honored their colleagues, and embraced the community’s support in their ongoing fight for a thriving writing profession.