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By Kristy Pryma

The Academy Award nominations were announced this morning. As a movie lover and a self-proclaimed awards show addict, I always pay close attention to what makes the cut and what doesn’t. I love to debate and argue the merits of one actress over another and the cinematography of this versus that, but what always intrigues me most is the category Best Adapted Screenplay.

Unlike the writers in the Best Original Screenplay category who create and own the characters and plot from inception, the Best Adapted Screenplay writers are tasked with taking an already existing story and transforming it into something new. This can be tricky. How many times have you seen a movie version of a book you love and think they really messed it up? Sometimes – rarely and beautifully – the movie version works and the audience is satisfied. (Gone Girl, which was sadly overlooked in today’s announcement, is one of those cases.)

It reminds me of what we do every day for our clients. We’re frequently asked to come up with an original program or plan, and that’s exciting and challenging. We brainstorm and create our vision in a blue sky kind of way. But other times, we’re tasked to work within that “Best Adapted” category. We take existing programs or concepts and transform and shape them for specific markets or audiences, always keeping in mind that certain messages need to pull through. Like the writer adapting that best-selling novel into a movie script, we need to stay true to the plot of the program while bringing it to life in a fresh and memorable way, and that can be exciting and challenging, too. Do it right and nobody will ever be able to tell which category it came from. Do it wrong and nobody will notice it at all.

As 2015 unfolds, it will be interesting to see how many brands will focus on the original category, and how many will stick to The Imitation Game.