Nebraska Center for Writers

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Omaha native ALEXANDER PAYNE is noted for setting many of his films in the Omaha area. Payne attended Creighton Prep High School and later went on to study Spanish and history at the University of Salamanca (Spain) and Stanford University. He graduated from the UCLA Film School in 1990 with a MFA in Theater Arts. Payne’s screenwriting and directing credits include Sideways (2004), About Schmidt (2004), Jurassic Park III (2001—writing only), Election (1999), and Citizen Ruth (1996). His work has received some of the most coveted honors in filmmaking. In 2005, Sideways won both the Academy Award and the Golden Globe for Best Screenplay, along with the Golden Globe for Best Comedy. His screenplay for About Schmidt earned a Golden Globe and the award for Best Adapted Screenplay from the Writers Guild of America. In addition, Election was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Screenplay Adaptation and was singled out by New Yorker film critic David Denby as the Best Film of 1999. In 2006, Payne was announced as the director of a movie entitled Nebraska, the story of a father and son driving from Montana to Nebraska in order to claim their prize from what they believe is a winning lottery ticket.

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Nebraska Center for Writers