Best Local Boy Made Good - 2009
Nick Schenk's life story sounds like it could be one of the movies he now writes for a living. A local truck driver, after a long day of delivering fruit to area stores, pulls his rig into the cramped parking lot of Grumpy's Bar in downtown Minneapolis. Pen in hand, the trucker settles at the bar, orders a Summit with his pal, and begins jotting down a screenplay. The story he concocts is made up of people he has met during a career speckled with dead-end jobs and chatty characters. There are the Hmong guys he worked with at a factory who taught him about their culture, the war vets who told him about their service while buying booze daily from him at a liquor store, and the salt-of-the-earth Minnesotans he knew while growing up. Eventually he turns his barroom jottings into a screenplay bought by Clint Eastwood. The guy goes on to win the best original screenplay award from the National Board of Review for Gran Torino and moves to Hollywood to write more movies. Fin.