Kathryn Bigelow defeats James Cameron and ‘Avatar’ to win Director’s Guild Award

01.31.10 8 years ago 4 Comments

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History was made Saturday night as Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win the Director’s Guild of America Outstanding Direction of a feature film award for “The Hurt Locker.”

Bigelow defeated a number of strong nominees including her ex-husband, but now good friend James Cameron (“Avatar”), Quentin Tarantino (“Inglourious Basterds”), Lee Daniels (“Precious”) and Jason Reitman (“Up in the Air”).  Only twice in the past ten years has a DGA winner not gone on to win the equivalent Academy Award.  Those exceptions occurred in 2001 when Ang Lee won for “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” (Steven Soderbergh won the Oscar for “Traffic”) and in 2002 when Rob Marshall won for “Chicago” (Roman Polanski won the Oscar that year for “The Pianist”).  In that time span, it should be noted the last six DGA winners went on to win Oscar.

Many will now speculate that this win along with the PGA win means that “Avatar’s” frontrunner status for Best Picture is not as strong as once believed.  It would be quite a David vs. Goliath story if “Hurt Locker,” which made only $12 million in the U.S. (but was No. 1 in DVD rental chart last week) defeated Cameron’s “Avatar” for Oscar’s biggest prize.  The critically acclaimed blockbuster will soon pass $2 billion worldwide and break “Titanic’s” domestic record of $600 million within the week. Money plus respect usually talks in Oscarland, but that doesn’t mean the Director’s statue won’t go to Bigelow.  In fact, this pundit would be shocked if it didn’t.

TV winners included “Mad Men” and a surprise win for “Modern Family.”  The complete list of 2010 Director’s Guild of America winners are as follows:

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Feature Film
Winner: Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Feature Documentary
Winner: Louie Psihoyos, “The Cove”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Movie for Television
Winner: Michael Sucsy, “Grey Gardens”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Dramatic Series Night
Winner: Lesli Linka Glatter, “Mad Men,” “Guy Walks Into An Advertising Agency”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Comedy Series
Winner: Jason Winer, “Modern Family,” Pilot

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Musical Variety program
Winner: Don Mischner, “We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Reality Program
Winner: Craig Borders, “Build It Bigger Season 3”: “Hong Kong Bridge”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Daytime Serial
Winner: Christopher Goutman, “As The World Turns,” “Once Upon A Time”

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction in Commercials
Winner: Tom Kuntz – Eyebrows, Cadbury; Tailor, Skittles; Scents For Gents, Old Spice; Tips, Career Builder

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