‘Mean Girls’ quotes earn Lindsay Lohan teen movie surprising Writers Guild Award nomination
The inclusion of Tina Fey’s Mean Girls screenplay was the big surprise among the 2005 Writers Guild of America (WGA) Award nominations. After all, despite plenty of Mean Girls quotes floating about, the Mark Waters-directed hit comedy has been wholly ignored this awards season. (More on the many memorable Mean Girls quotes a few paragraphs down.)
The other nominees in the WGA Awards’ Theatrical Films categories are all U.S. critics’ faves to some extent or other, including The Aviator, Sideways, and Million Dollar Baby.
Update: See further below a partial list of this year’s WGA Award winners and nominees.
WGA Awards eligibility
As a result of the WGA’s guild-oriented eligibility rules, non-English-language releases are almost invariably disqualified.
One exception is this year’s multinational, Spanish-language nominee The Motorcycle Diaries / Diarios de motocicleta, which was deemed eligible because the Walter Salles-directed, partly U.S.-funded road movie/political drama was produced according to guild regulations.
On the other hand, certain U.S./part-U.S. films made by companies not affiliated with the Writers Guild were ineligible for the WGA Awards. Case in point is Marc Forster’s Miramax-distributed Finding Neverland, which was produced outside the Guild’s current labor regulations.
The most notorious such exclusion is probably that of another Miramax-distributed movie: Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, which was left off the 1994 WGA Awards’ longlist.
Non-WGA Award contenders eligible for the Academy Awards
Although ineligible for the WGA Awards, well-regarded non-English-language films such as Alejandro Amenábar’s The Sea Inside, Pedro Almodóvar’s Bad Education, and Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s A Very Long Engagement, remain potential Oscar contenders, as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has a different set of eligibility rules.
In early 2004, for instance, Denys Arcand’s French-language Canadian family drama The Barbarian Invasions and Fernando Meirelles’ Portuguese-language Brazilian social/crime drama City of God were left off the WGA Awards’ list. Yet both films went on to receive Oscar nominations in the screenwriting categories.
The previous year, the same off/on thing happened with two Spanish-language titles: Alfonso Cuarón’s Mexican comedy-drama Y Tu Mamá También and Pedro Almodóvar’s Spanish drama Talk to Her. The latter would earn screenwriter-director Almodóvar the Best Original Screenplay Oscar.
Also absent from the 2003 WGA Awards list was Roman Polanski’s English-language The Pianist, a Polish-British-French-German co-production that ultimately received the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar.
And in 2002, Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s French-made, WGA Award-bypassed Amélie found itself listed as one of the Academy Award nominees for Best Original Screenplay.
WGA Awards vs. animated films + iffy ‘Mean Girls’
Something else: bizarrely, animated films are not allowed to compete for the WGA Awards. The Academy Awards have no such rule.
Andrew Adamson and Vicky Jenson’s Shrek (2001) and Andrew Stanton’s Finding Nemo (2003) are two recent animated features that received Oscar nominations in the writing categories. This year, the same will probably happen with Brad Bird’s The Incredibles.
Somewhat ironically, memorable quotes or no, WGA Award nominee Mean Girls’ Oscar chances are iffy.
‘Mean Girls’ quotes
Partially based on Rosalind Wiseman’s 2002 nonfiction self-help book Queen Bees and Wannabes, Mean Girls is set in the wealthy Chicago suburb of Evanston, where a teenager (Lindsay Lohan), recently returned to the U.S. after years in Africa, is enrolled at the local public high school.
There she meets the members of the fearsome Plastics clique: a rich bitch (Rachel McAdams), her sycophantic pal (Lacey Chabert), and their dimwitted blonde friend (Amanda Seyfried).
There’s more: the Plastics’ mortal goth enemy (Lizzy Caplan), a flamboyant gay stereotype (Daniel Franzese), and a calculus teacher who may or may not be a drug dealer (Tina Fey).
Among the popularized Mean Girls quotes are:
- Rachel McAdams’ Regina asserting, “I can’t go to Taco Bell, I’m on an all-carb diet.”
- Amanda Seyfried’s Karen marveling, “It’s like I have ESPN or something. My breasts can tell when it’s gonna rain.”
- Daniel Franzece’s Damian confiding, “My grandma takes her wig off when she’s drunk.”
- Lacey Chabert’s Gretchen exclaiming, “Regina, you’re wearing sweatpants. It’s Monday. … You can’t sit with us!”
- Also Gretchen, faux lamenting, “I’m sorry that people are so jealous of me. But I can’t help it that I’m popular.”
- Lindsay Lohan’s Cady philosophizing, “In the real world, Halloween is when kids dress up and beg for candy. But in Girl World, Halloween is the one day of the year a girl can dress like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it.”
‘Mean Girls’ quotes & awards season recognition
Apart from the WGA Awards, Mean Girls’ quotes – and their delivery – have resulted in nominations only from lesser-known and/or populist groups, among them:
- Online Film & Television Association: Tina Fey (Best First Screenplay) and Lindsay Lohan (Best Youth Performance).
- Broadcast Film Critics Association (and its Critics’ Choice Awards): Lindsay Lohan (Best Young Actress).
- People’s Choice Awards: Favorite Movie Comedy.
See below a partial list of the 2005 WGA Award winners (announced on Feb. 19) and nominees. Tina Fey’s Mean Girls quotes lost out to Sideways’ Merlot odes.
The Aviator - John Logan.
* Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - Charlie Kaufman; story by Kaufman, Michel Gondry & Pierre Bismuth.
Garden State - Zach Braff.
Hotel Rwanda - Keir Pearson & Terry George.
Kinsey - Bill Condon.
Before Sunset - Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy & Ethan Hawke; story by Linklater & Kim Krizan.
The Motorcycle Diaries - José Rivera.
Mean Girls - Tina Fey.
Million Dollar Baby - Paul Haggis.
* Sideways - Alexander Payne & Jim Taylor.
Longform Original: Something the Lord Made - Peter Silverman & Robert Caswell.
Longform Adapted: Angels in America - Tony Kushner.
Laurel Award for Screen Writing Achievement: David Mamet.
SAG Awards: Hilary Swank beats Annette Bening
From Mean Girls quotes to female boxers and 1930s Hollywood stars: There were few surprises at the 2005 Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards, held at the Shrine Exposition Center in Los Angeles on Feb. 5.
BAFTA snubee Hilary Swank was chosen Best Actress for her determined and steadfastly loyal boxer in Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby, beating out Annette Bening’s larger-than-life stage actress in István Szabo’s Being Julia and Imelda Staunton’s sweet, working-class abortionist in Mike Leigh’s Vera Drake.
Alexander Payne’s Wine Country road movie Sideways, toplining Paul Giamatti, Thomas Haden Church, Virginia Madsen, and Sandra Oh – a favorite among U.S. critics – won the Best Cast award.
Morgan Freeman surprise & ‘godawful’ Clint Eastwood
The only surprise of the evening was the choice of Morgan Freeman as Best Supporting Actor for Million Dollar Baby. Thus far, Thomas Haden Church has won most awards in that category for his (co-lead) performance as Sideways’ egocentric, dim-witted, and sex-starved actor.
Considering Hilary Swank’s and Morgan Freeman’s individual wins alongside Sideways’ Best Cast victory, it kinda looks like a number of SAG Award voters felt that Clint Eastwood, bypassed in the Best Actor category, was so godawful as Swank’s Million Dollar Baby trainer/surrogate father that, like a thespian black hole, he sucked in the starlight of his two fellow players.
James Garner receives Life Achievement Award
And finally, the Screen Actors Guild’s 2005 Life Achievement Award recipient was big- and small-screen star James Garner (The Thrill of It All, The Americanization of Emily, Grand Prix, the TV series The Rockford Files), also in the running in the Best Supporting Actor (Film) category for Nick Cassavetes’ The Notebook.
Garner had three previous SAG Award nominations, each for his work in a TV Movie or Miniseries: The Rockford Files: I Still Love L.A. (1994), The Rockford Files: A Blessing in Disguise (1995), and Legalese (1998).
To date, he has received one single Oscar nomination: in the Best Actor category for Martin Ritt’s Murphy’s Romance (1985).
An aside: James Garner (born James Scott Bumgarner) and this year’s Best Actress in a Drama Series SAG Award winner Jennifer Garner (born Jennifer Anne Garner) are not related.
See below the list of the 2005 SAG Award winners and a partial list of nominees.
Screen Actors Guild
Annette Bening, Being Julia.
Catalina Sandino Moreno, Maria Full of Grace.
Imelda Staunton, Vera Drake.
* Hilary Swank, Million Dollar Baby.
Kate Winslet, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
* Cate Blanchett, The Aviator.
Cloris Leachman, Spanglish.
Laura Linney, Kinsey.
Virginia Madsen, Sideways.
Sophie Okonedo, Hotel Rwanda.
Don Cheadle, Hotel Rwanda.
Johnny Depp, Finding Neverland.
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Aviator.
* Jamie Foxx, Ray.
Paul Giamatti, Sideways.
Thomas Haden Church, Sideways.
Jamie Foxx, Collateral.
* Morgan Freeman, Million Dollar Baby.
James Garner, The Notebook.
Freddie Highmore, Finding Neverland.
Million Dollar Baby.
Actress - TV Movie/Miniseries
* Glenn Close, The Lion in Winter.
Patricia Heaton, Neil Simon’s The Goodbye Girl.
Keke Palmer, The Wool Cap.
Hilary Swank, Iron Jawed Angels.
Charlize Theron, The Life and Death of Peter Sellers.
Actor - TV Movie/Miniseries
Jamie Foxx, Redemption: The Stan Tookie Williams Story.
William H. Macy, The Wool Cap.
Barry Pepper, 3: The Dale Earnhardt Story.
* Geoffrey Rush, The Life and Death of Peter Sellers.
Jon Voight, Mitch Albom’s The Five People You Meet in Heaven.
Actor - Comedy Series: Tony Shalhoub, Monk.
Actress - Comedy Series: Teri Hatcher, Desperate Housewives.
Actor - Drama Series: Jerry Orbach, Law & Order.
Actress - Drama Series: Jennifer Garner, Alias.
Cast - Comedy Series: Desperate Housewives.
Cast - Drama Series: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
Life Achievement Award: James Garner.
‘Collateral’ & ‘The Passion of the Christ’ among ASC Award nominees
From Mean Girls quotes and (nearly) unbeatable female boxers to Ray Charles and Jesus Christ: In other awards season news, the list of nominated features for the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) Award included a wide array of themes and aesthetics.
Quotable quotes and bone-breaking fists or not, neither Mean Girls nor Million Dollar Baby made the cut, but Michael Mann’s moody thriller Collateral and Mel Gibson’s blood-soaked sleeper hit The Passion of the Christ did. The latter’s inclusion is particularly noteworthy, considering U.S. right-wingers’ hand-wringing and hair-pulling about “Liberal” Hollywood’s purported anti-Christian bias.
The film’s cinematographer, Caleb Deschanel, has already won an ASC Award for a Mel Gibson effort, The Patriot (2000), in addition to having been nominated for Fly Away Home (1996).
Deschanel received Academy Award nominations for both films, as well as for The Right Stuff (1983) and The Natural (1984). Strangely, he was bypassed for The Black Stallion (1979), hailed in some quarters as one of the most visually striking movies ever made.
More ASC Award nominees
Besides Caleb Deschanel, here are this year’s other ASC Award feature film nominees:
- Dion Beebe & Paul Cameron for Collateral. Both are first-time contenders.
- Robert Richardson for The Aviator. His previous ASC Award nominations were for the Oliver Stone hits Born on the Fourth of July (1989) and JFK (1991), plus A Few Good Men (1992), the Stone flop Heaven & Earth (1993), The Horse Whisperer (1998), and Snow Falling on Cedars (1999). He won an Oscar for JFK, and was nominated for Platoon (1986), Born on the Fourth of July, and Snow Falling on Cedars.
- Bruno Delbonnel for A Very Long Engagement. He was an ASC and Oscar nominee for another French-language, Jean-Pierre Jeunet-directed international hit, Amélie (2001).
- Pawel Edelman for Ray. He was an ASC and Oscar nominee for The Pianist (2002).
Somewhat surprisingly, two North American critics’ favorites, Christopher Doyle and Zhao Xiaoding, were bypassed for their work on, respectively, Hero and House of Flying Daggers – both Zhang Yimou-directed period Chinese epics.
Finding Neverland cinematographer Roberto Schaefer was another notable ASC Award absentee.
Last year’s ASC Award winner was John Schwartzman for Seabiscuit. The Best Cinematography Oscar, however, went to ASC Award nominee Russell Boyd for Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World.
Update:See below a partial list of the 2005 ASC Award winners, in addition those of the Directors Guild of America, the Producers Guild of America, the American Cinema Editors, the Art Directors Guild, the Costume Designers Guild, and the Visual Effects Society.
American Society of Cinematographers
Film: A Very Long Engagement - Bruno Delbonnel.
Motion Picture, Miniseries, or Pilot for Broadcast TV: Homeland Security - Jonathan Freeman.
Motion Picture, Miniseries, or Pilot for Basic or Pay TV: Iron Jawed Angels - Robbie Greenberg.
Lifetime Achievement Award: Fred J. Koenekamp.
International Award: Tonino Delli Colli.
Board of the Governors Award: Gilbert Cates.
Directors Guild of America
Martin Scorsese - The Aviator.
Marc Forster - Finding Neverland.
* Clint Eastwood - Million Dollar Baby.
Taylor Hackford - Ray.
Alexander Payne - Sideways.
* Byambasuren Davaa & Luigi Falorni - The Story of the Weeping Camel / Die Geschichte vom weinenden Kamel.
Ross Kauffman & Zana Briski - Born Into Brothels.
Ross McElwee - Bright Leaves.
Michael Moore - Fahrenheit 9/11.
Jehane Noujaim - Control Room.
Robert Altman - Tanner on Tanner, Parts 1-4.
Stephen Hopkins - The Life and Death of Peter Sellers.
Lloyd Kramer - The Five People You Meet in Heaven.
Christopher Reeve - The Brooke Ellison Story.
* Joseph Sargent - Something the Lord Made.
Producers Guild of America
* The Aviator, Michael Mann & Graham King.
Million Dollar Baby.
Longform Television: Angels in America - Mike Nichols, Cary Brokaw, Celia D. Costas & Michael Haley.
David O. Selznick Achievement Award: Laura Ziskin.
David Susskind Achievement Award: John Wells.
Stanley Kramer Award: Hotel Rwanda & Innocent Voices.
American Cinema Editors
Film (Dramatic): The Aviator, Thelma Schoonmaker.
Film (Comedy or Musical): Ray, Paul Hirsch.
Documentary: Riding Giants, Paul Crowder.
Miniseries or Motion Picture (Non-Commercial Television): Something the Lord Made, Michael Brown.
Miniseries or Motion Picture (Commercial Television): Redemption, Terilyn A. Shropshire.
Career Achievement: Dave Blewitt & Jim Clark.
ACE Golden Eddie Filmmaker of the Year: James L. Brooks.
Art Directors Guild
Film (Period or Fantasy): Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events - Rick Heinrichs.
Film (Contemporary): The Terminal - Alex McDowell.
Television Movie/Miniseries: And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself - Herbert Pinter.
Outstanding Contribution to Cinematic Imagery Award: Zhang Yimou.
Costume Designers Guild
Film (Fantasy or Period): Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, Colleen Atwood.
Film (Contemporary): The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Milena Canonero.
Television (Contemporary): Sex and the City, Patricia Field.
Television (Fantasy or Period): The Life and Death of Peter Sellers, Jill Taylor.
President’s Award: Debbie Reynolds.
Producer/Director Award: Ismail Merchant & James Ivory.
Visual Effects Society
Visual Effects in a Visual Effects Driven Motion Picture: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
Single Visual Effect: “Tidal Wave,” The Day After Tomorrow.
Compositing: “Train Sequence,” Spider-Man 2.
Created Environment: “NYC Street - Night,” Spider-Man 2.
Supporting Visual Effects: The Aviator.
Performance in a Visual Effects Film: Alfred Molina, Spider-Man 2.
WGA Awards website.
American Society of Cinematographers website.
Images of Mean Girls quotes deliverers Rachel McAdams, Amanda Seyfried, Lindsay Lohan, and Lacey Chabert: Paramount Pictures.
Clint Eastwood and Hilary Swank Million Dollar Baby image: Warner Bros.
Tom Cruise Collateral image: DreamWorks/Paramount Pictures.
“Mean Girls Quotes Pay Awards Season Dividends + Hollywood Not So ‘Anti-Christian’” last updated in May 2019.