Bob Nelson, a Western Washington native and former writer and cast member on KING 5 s Almost Live, on Saturday won the Spirit Award for first screenplay for Nebraska.
Presented by Film Independent (a group of filmmakers, industry professionals and movie buffs) and hosted by Patton Oswalt, the Spirits celebrate indie film and cast a spotlight on the little films that have to scrape money together to get made.
In his acceptance speech, Nelson said he had fulfilled his goal of becoming the oldest recipient of best first screenplay. Nelson is 57.
Nelson is also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Screenplay.
Nebraska picked up a total of six nominations, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Bruce Dern.
In the film, Dern plays a cranky old dad whose son is driving him from Montana to Nebraska to claim what he believes is a sweepstakes lottery prize. Along the way, Dern and his family come across old friends and relatives who have their own designs on his newly found fortune.
Nelson says he got the idea for the film when he was working on Almost Live.
I used to go through the press and look for set-ups for the John Report. And at some point, I heard about older folks actually showing up at sweepstakes offices thinking they had won and they would be too nervous to put it in the mail so they would travel cross country, so it actually happened, he said.
Nelson told the Wall Street Journal that he is working with another Almost Live! veteran (and Community star) Joel McHale on a new project called The Tribe, about the first year of a Native American high school and their girls' softball team.
Nelson said he would direct and McHale would star.