April 14, 2024

News Release: November 18, 2014

Len Uhley to Receive WGAW’s 2014 Animation Writers Caucus Writing Award

Photo: Masayo Benoist
2014 Award Recipient

Veteran television animation writer Len Uhley (Ben 10, Static Shock, Duck Tales) is set to receive the Writers Guild of America West Animation Writers Caucus’ 2014 Animation Writing Award, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to animation writing.

The AWC’s lifetime achievement award will be presented to Uhley tomorrow night, Wednesday, November 19, at the AWC’s annual meeting and awards ceremony at WGAW headquarters in Los Angeles. Fellow AWC honorees Stan Berkowitz and Alan Burnett are set to co-present the AWC award to Uhley, and WGAW Vice President Howard A. Rodman will be on hand to introduce the evening’s ceremony.

“Len Uhley is one of the finest choices the Animation Writers Caucus and the Guild could make for this award. A talented writer with credits in both episodic and feature animation, he's always been one of the most respected, nicest people in the industry, always willing to share his time and his advice, and a good friend to all – a truly deserving recipient of this award,” said AWC Chair Craig Miller.

“When you look at the number and variety of animated series Len Uhley has contributed to over the years and the high quality of work he has brought to them, it’s quite an astonishing record. For a lot of people in animation he has been the go-to guy, both in comedy and action-adventure. For many of us he also represents the backbone of the industry,” said past AWC honoree Alan Burnett.

According to Berkowitz, Uhley is a writer who “knows story structure backward and forward and always gives his best effort – even to shows with the word ‘dork’ in the title.” Beyond being adept at the craft of animation writing, over the years Uhley has shown “a serious commitment to the union movement – which is good because we had to work hard to get those scripts covered by the WGA.”

After his first professional sale while still in his junior year at UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television, an introduction to a story editor at Walt Disney TV Animation in 1986 led to a prolific, nearly 30-year writing career in animation.

As a staff writer at Disney, he wrote episodes of DuckTales, Adventures of the Gummi Bears, TailSpin, Winnie the Pooh, Chip ‘n Dale’s Rescue Rangers, Darkwing Duck, and Bonkers. Uhley has been a story editor on series produced by Warner Bros., Disney and MGM, having written over 200 television episodes and home videos for DreamWorks Classics, Cartoon Network Studios, Hasbro, Warner Bros., Disney, Marvel, NickToons, Sony, DIC, BKN International, BBC, Endemol, CBN, Film Roman, MGM, Saban, Viacom, and Renaissance Pictures.

His freelance work includes multiple assignments for the Ben 10: Alien Force, Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, and Ben 10: Omniverse series; Static Shock; Superbook; and the UK-based series Friends & Heroes and The 99. He has written for action shows (Batman, Justice League, The Avengers, Iron Man, He-Man, Kaijudo, The Fantastic Four, Robocop, Skeleton Warriors, Zorro, Young Hercules and three versions of X-Men) and classic comedy properties (Scooby-Doo, 1001 Nights, Ozzy & Drix, and a pilot for Archie), as well as series designed for younger viewers (Rescue Bots, Octonauts, Krypto the Superdog and Strawberry Shortcake). He most recently worked with DreamWorks Classics and Big Idea Entertainment on two VeggieTales home video releases.

In 2012, Uhley received a Writers Guild Award nomination for Animation for penning the Ben 10: Ultimate Alien episode, “Moonstruck.” Over the course of his career, Uhley has shared five Emmy nominations for his work on a variety of animation series: Static Shock (2003 and 2004, Special Class Animated Program), Ozzy & Drix (2003, Special Class Animated Program), TaleSpin (1991, Outstanding Animated Program for Programming More than One Hour), and Duck Tales (1989, Outstanding Animation Program).

In addition, he received the Entertainment Industries Council's Prism Award for the “Where There’s Smoke” episode of WB animated series Ozzy & Drix.

He has also written three animated features for Universal Studios Home Entertainment (The Land Before Time VII, An American Tail III, and An American Tail IV) and has developed long-form projects for Disney Feature Animation, DreamWorks Animation, and DIC Entertainment.

The WGAW’s AWC Animation Writing Award is given to members of the Animation Writers Caucus or Writers Guild who have advanced the literature of animation in film and television throughout the years and made outstanding contributions to the profession of the animation writer. Founded in 1994, the WGAW’s Animation Writers Caucus represents over 600 animation writers and works to advance economic and creative conditions in the field. Through organizing efforts, educational events, and networking opportunities, the Guild’s AWC is a leading proponent for animation writers.

Previous AWC Animation Writing Award honorees include Stan Berkowitz, Brad Bird, Alan Burnett, Matt Groening, Al Jean & Mike Reiss, Dwayne McDuffie and Earl Kress, Mike Scully, Patric M. Verrone, Linda Woolverton, and, most recently, Sam Simon.