LOS ANGELES– Veteran comedy-variety television and screenwriter Arthur Sellers has been named the recipient of the Writers Guild of America West’s 2016 Morgan Cox Award in recognition of his Guild service. Sellers will be honored at the WGAW’s 2016 Writers Guild Awards West Coast ceremony on Saturday, February 13, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles.
“Arthur has given countless hours of time, sat in more meetings than anyone can count, in service of improving not his own lot, but the lot of all of us – and he’s done it with intelligence, with wit, with unceasing good cheer,” said WGAW President Howard A. Rodman. “He’s a living embodiment of generosity of spirit.”
In addition to serving on the WGAW’s Board of Directors from 1989-1991, Sellers has served on numerous Guild committees over the decades, including: MBA Negotiating, 1987-89; Standing Committee on Negotiations, 1989; Board Nominating, 1995; Contract Adjustment Committee (CAC) Steering, 1991-92; Contract Adjustment, 1991; Dues Study, 1991; East-West Study 1993; Membership and Finance, 1991; Officers Nominating 1993; Outreach Steering, 1986-89; 1996; Bulletin Board System (BBS) Advisory, 1989-91; and Waiver, 1987-2002.
A WGAW member since 1976, Sellers television writing credits from the ’70s through the 2000s include comedy series Anything for Money, Max Headroom, Space Precinct, The Journey of Allen Strange, Forever Fernwood, and The Famous Jett Jackson, comedy/variety shows The Richard Pryor Show, Tony Orlando and Dawn, and Mel and Susan Together, and Cher’s 1979 TV special, Cher…and Other Fantasies, as well as animated series Beast Wars: Transformers and Jungle Cubs. He shared an Emmy nomination for his work on the 1988 animated TV special Meet the Raisins!, a “mockumentary” about the rise and fall of those pop-culture phenoms, the California Raisins (Outstanding Animated Program, Programming Less Than One Hour).
Sellers’ screenwriting credits include 1981’s Chevy Chase-starring comedy Modern Problems (Written by Ken Shapiro & Tom Sherohman & Arthur Sellers), and the 1999 action-thriller The Vivero Letter (co-written by Denne Bart Petitclerc).
Sellers studied pre-engineering at Purdue University (1963-64) and attended the NYU Tisch School of the Arts (1967-69) via a full acting scholarship. He was a member of the Lincoln Center Repertory Company from 1969-70, acted in numerous off-Broadway stage productions and at the Bucks County Playhouse, and appeared in several TV soaps before focusing on writing in 1976. Sellers also co-wrote and directed the play “Tofu on the Rampage” at the Los Angeles Theatre Center.
Beyond writing, Sellers has worked with special education children in the Burbank Unified School District since 2005.
The Morgan Cox Award honors that WGAW member whose vital ideas, continuing efforts, and personal sacrifice best exemplify the ideal of service to the Guild. During his lifetime, Cox devoted his professional career to serving the Guild, working to ensure television writers were included under WGA jurisdiction. Previous recipients include George Kirgo, Del Reisman, Frank Pierson, Carl Gottlieb, Patric M. Verrone, Daniel Petrie, Jr., Thomas Cook, and Jeff Melvoin.
For a press photo of 2016 Morgan Cox honoree Arthur Sellers, click here.
Photo credit: Nicol Biesek
The Writers Guild Awards honor outstanding writing in film, television, new media, videogames, news, radio, promotional, and graphic animation categories. The awards will be presented jointly at simultaneous ceremonies on Saturday, February 13, 2016, in Los Angeles at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza and in New York City at the Edison Ballroom. For more information about the 2016 Writers Guild Awards, please visit www.wga.org or www.wgaeast.org.
For media inquiries about the 2013 Writers Guild Awards Los Angeles show, please contact Gregg Mitchell in the WGAW Communications Department at: (323) 782-4651 or email: Gregg Mitchell.
For media inquiries about the 2015 Writers Guild Awards New York City show, please contact Jason Gordon in the WGAE Communications Department at (212) 767-7809 or email: Jason Gordon.
The Writers Guild of America West (WGAW) and the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) are labor unions representing writers in motion pictures, television, cable, digital media, and broadcast news. The Guilds negotiate and administer contracts that protect the creative and economic rights of their members; conduct programs, seminars, and events on issues of interest to writers; and present writers’ views to various bodies of government. For more information on the Writers Guild of America West, visit www.wga.org. For more information on the Writers Guild of America, East, visit www.wgaeast.org.