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Born in Lynn, raised in Peabody, Brian Hayes Currie wins big at Oscars with ‘Green Book’

From left; Brian Hayes Currie, Peter Farrelly and Nick Vallelonga accept the award for best original screenplay for "Green Book" at the Oscars on Sunday at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.
From left; Brian Hayes Currie, Peter Farrelly and Nick Vallelonga accept the award for best original screenplay for "Green Book" at the Oscars on Sunday at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

LOS ANGELES — The hits just keep on coming for Peabody’s Brian Hayes Currie.

The Lynn native was part of the writing team that picked up an Oscar for best original screenplay Sunday night in Hollywood for the film “Green Book.”

Then, in what could be described as a mild stunner, the film won the “best picture” award, beating out the heavily-favored “Roma,” whose director, Alfonso Cuaron, received the Oscar for best director.

“GreenBook” is based on a real-life story of the father of Nick Vallelonga — another member of the team — who drove African-American pianist Don Shirley on a tour through the Deep South in the 1960s and is played by Viggo Mortensen in the movie.

The third member of the team is Peter Farrelly.

This is Currie’s second major award this year. The film’s screenplay also won a Golden Globe award in the same category.

Currie told The Item last fall that the chance to co-write the story was an accident.

“One of the guys I met years ago when I worked in nightclubs was Nick Vallelonga, my buddy,” said Currie, a graduate of St. John’s Preparatory School in Danvers. “Nick kept this story close to the vest because he wanted to make it himself. When he finally told me, I offered to write and produce it with him, and he agreed.”

Currie talked to Farrelly, who also directed the film, who liked the idea.

Currie said the casting of Mortensen and Ali was brilliant and could have made all the difference.

“Peter Farrelly came up with genius idea of Viggo Mortensen and Ali,” he said. “As a writer, when you have actors that can make it look that easy, it makes us, as writers, look smart.”

The film title is taken from “The Negro Motorist Green-Book,” a travel guide published from 1936 to 1966 to advise black travelers on where to stay and what to avoid in the South.

“Green Book” has grossed $144 million worldwide since its November release.

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