Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Jan Sardi has been elected president of the Australian Writers' Guild (AWG) following the end of Tim Pye's four-year term.

Sardi, the screenwriter behind films such as Mao's Last Dancer and Shine, has served on numerous AWG committees including recently as chair of its feature film committee and as an organiser of the National Screenwriters Conference.

"I'm honoured to have been given this opportunity to represent our nation's storytellers as president of the Australian Writers' Guild, an organisation I've been a proud member of for thirty years," Sardi said in a statement.

“Under Tim Pye's presidency, the Guild has grown to become one of our leading industry organisations and I look forward to following his lead and contributing to the vital role the guild plays in promoting the craft, status and conditions of Australian performance writers."

Sardi received an Academy Award Nomination for his screenplay for Shine, the story of pianist David Helfgott, in 1997, as well as BAFTA, Writers’ Guild of America, and Golden Globe award nominations. In 2003, he wrote and directed the award-winning Australian/UK production Love’s Brother.

He has also adapted The Notebook and Mao’s Last Dancer for the screen and is currently adaptating The Secret River by Kate Grenville and Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier.

The AWG National Executive Council also includes: Andrew Bovell, Barbara Connell, John Doyle, Mac Gudgeon, Michael Harvey, Naomi Janzen, Kelly Lefever, Peter Moon, Tim Pye, Rick Kalowski, Shane Krause and Roger Simpson.

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