Matthew Gossett‘s (BFA 2010 Film and Video) Origin of a Species was recently named Best Script of 2011 by Amazon Studios, earning the 31-year-old screenwriter an award of $100,000. The script, which Amazon calls a “chilling suspense and mind-twisting storyline that left judges on the edge of their seats,” centers on a former cop who has to save a small Midwestern town from a pair of rabid dogs.
Gossett said he found inspiration from Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species and was drawn by the challenge of adapting the book into a narrative film. He adds, “I first started developing this story when I was a senior at SVA and picked it back up a while after graduation. I don’t really remember why this story came to me, but my screenplays all tend to deal with the theme of man versus nature. The screenplay ended up merely echoing Darwin’s themes and really isn’t an adaptation at all, but I had to start somewhere.” Gossett plans to use the award money to focus on writing full time and to pay off his student loans. He said he might finally take a vacation, too.
To watch a video of Gossett receiving the good news, visit Hollywonk.