The Americans are coming to storm Britain’s literary citadel.
Organizers of the Booker Prize announced Wednesday that from next year authors from the U.S. will be eligible to win the prestigious fiction award.
Booker trustees said that, starting in 2014, the prize will be open to novels written in English and published in Britain, regardless of the author’s nationality.
Founded in 1969, the Booker has previously been open to writers only from Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth of former British colonies.
This year’s six finalists include several writers with strong U.S. ties, among them Jhumpa Lahiri and Ruth Ozeki. The winner will be announced Oct. 15.
‘Dinosaur’ bumped; no Pixar film in ’14
Walt Disney Pictures has pushed the release date of the Pixar film The Good Dinosaur to November 2015, leaving the Pixar cupboard bare for next year.
The 3-D film had been planned to hit theaters in May before Disney’s announcement Wednesday. It means that 2014 will be the first year since 2005 to go without a new Pixar movie.
The Good Dinosaur imagines a world if dinosaurs never became extinct. The production has been rocky, with director Bob Peterson exiting the film last month. A replacement hasn’t been named.
‘American Masters’ creator exits show
HBO says Susan Lacy, creator and executive producer of WNET’s American Masters, has signed a multi-year deal to produce and direct documentaries for the network.
Lacy will work with Sheila Nevins, president of HBO Documentary Films, as a producer and director.
Nevins on Wednesday voiced excitement at having someone as talented as Susan Lacy bring fresh ideas to HBO.
While expressing regret at Lacy’s departure, PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger declared an ongoing commitment to continuing American Masters.
Created by Lacy in 1986, American Masters has produced more than 190 profiles of artists, musicians, writers and filmmakers.
Gish Prize to honor Spike Lee
Spike Lee will receive the 20th annual Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize, which carries a reward of $300,000.
The Gish Prize Trust announced the selection Wednesday. Selection committee Chairman Darren Walker says Lee was chosen for his brilliance and unwavering courage in using film to challenge conventional thinking.
In an interview Wednesday, Lee said he was familiar with Lillian Gish as an actress, but he hadn’t heard of the award until he was called out of the blue.
Past honorees include Bob Dylan, Arthur Miller and Frank Gehry. The prize named for the silent film stars is one of the largest and most prestigious awards in the arts.