IndieWire’s Ben Travers wins Southern California Journalism Award

IndieWire’s assistant television editor and television critic, Ben Travers, also won an award for entertainment commentary.

IndieWire scooped two major awards Saturday night as the Los Angeles Press Club announced the winners of the 2022 Southern California Journalism Awards. The entire staff of IndieWire was recognized as the traditional news organization’s best site, with the panel of judges noting that the site is “packed with analysis on entertainment topics, not to mention the depth of most of the articles that immediately surface on the site.” Quite captivating and thought provoking.”

IndieWire Assistant TV Editor and TV Critic Ben Travers also won an Entertainment Commentary Award for his play TV’s IP Problem: How Reboots, Spinoffs, and Blockbuster Franchises Could Shape the Future. Travers’ win was accompanied by a judge’s commentary noting that “the author argues brilliantly that the repetitive nature of the blockbuster mentality comes at the expense of originality, which we all have to pay for.”

In his essay, Travers argues that “Today, television does everything, and when it comes to scripted series, the small screen sees an influx of reboots, revivals, and sequels, some of which are taking the form of big-budget franchises.” The streaming wars have created a slew of new services all striving for dominance, and the easiest way to win is to offer audiences something they already know and want. Whether this is the next installment in the Marvel (Not-So-)Cinematic Universe or an expansion of The Godfather trilogy, awareness can be a shortcut to subscribers — or at least that’s the dominant mindset, that of a Brinks truck is backed by Hollywood money.”

Three other IndieWire employees received nominations for their contributions to the site. IndieWire’s Chief Film Critic, David Ehrlich, was nominated for Best Film Critics, an award that encompassed his many reviews for IndieWire. Associate Editor Jude Dry was also nominated for Best Personality Profile, Film/TV Personalities, for her profile of Ruth Negga entitled Ruth Negga Crafted a “F*ck-You Machine” to the Establishment with Her Radiant Turn in “Passing.” nominated. And TV editor Kristen Lopez covered “Crip Camp,” co-director James LeBrecht alleges that CBS and the TV Academy cheated on him at Emmy Ramp, and earned her a nomination for Best Music/Performing Entertainment News.

According to their mission statement, the annual awards aim to “support, promote, and defend quality journalism in Southern California.” The tradition has existed for 59 years, and while the media landscape has changed significantly in that time, “the organization continues to draw attention to LA’s outstanding journalists while promoting excellence in new and emerging media.”

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Lindsay Lowe

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