October 29, 2013 Los Angeles – In recognition of his contributions to the arts, screenwriter, professor, and Writers Guild of America, West Vice President Howard A. Rodman has been chosen by the government of France to receive the Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters honor. The ceremony will take place at the French Residence in Beverly Hills on Thursday, October 31.According to Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy in the United States, “Howard has shown unmatched talent and diversity in the arts over several decades. This decoration speaks to his expertise and his passion for creation that is indeed contagious. His commitment to producing and sharing meaningful art – in his screenplays, novels, and as a professor – is truly admirable and rare. Howard’s advocacy for French culture in L.A. and the United States has been enormous and strong bridges have been built between the countries thanks to his dedication.
I am honored to not only present him this award, but to call him a very dear friend.”“For American writers and filmmakers of my generation, French literature, cinema, theory, culture meant everything,” said Rodman. “Much of our work acknowledges that gift, and attempts perhaps in some small ways to repay it. This recognition is wondrous, and I’m wildly grateful for it. It feels like coming home.”Rodman’s screenwriting credits include indie films such as Savage Grace (2008), for which he received a Spirit Award nomination for Best Screenplay, and August (2007) – both of which had their U.S. premieres at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival. He also penned the 2000 feature Joe Gould’s Secret, which opened the 2000 Sundance Film Festival. In addition, his original screenplay, F., was named one of “Hollywood’s Ten Best Unproduced Screenplays” by Premiere Magazine.Over the course of his diverse career, Rodman has been a novelist, screenwriter, and educator. He has served as WGAW Vice President since 2011, having previously sat on the WGAW’s Board of Directors for several terms.
He is professor and former chair of the writing division at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, an Artistic Director of the Sundance Institute Screenwriting Labs, a member of the Executive Committee of the Writers Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), and a fellow of the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities.A longtime advocate for independent film, Rodman founded and chairs the WGAW’s Independent Film Writers Committee and has chaired Film Independent’s Spirit Awards feature film jury, as well as the USC Scripter Awards. He is a trustee of the Writers Guild Foundation, Vice-Chair of the WGAW’s Committee on the Professional Status of Writers (CPSW), and continues to serve on several non-profit organization boards, including the Franco-American Cultural Fund.In the literary arena, Rodman’s well-received 1990 novel, Destiny Express, an historical romance set in the pre-war German film community, was called “daringly imagined, darkly romantic – a moral thriller” by author Thomas Pynchon. As a journalist earlier in his career, Rodman – starting as Editor-in-Chief of The Cornell Sun – published articles in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Magazine, and the Village Voice, for which he was a monthly columnist.
Members of the media who wish to attend the ceremony should contact:Shirley MoirinPress and Media Department,French Consulate in Los AngelesTel: firstname.lastname@example.org