‘The Artist’s’ Michel Hazanavicus wins the 2012 DGA Award for film

The Director’s Guild of America announced their 2012 DGA Awards this evening and it featured a showdown in the feature film category that had every pundit and Oscar watcher this side of the Mississippi had their eye on: Michel Hazanavicus of “The Artist” vs. the legendary Martin Scorsese of “Hugo” fame.  With the Producer’s Guild having already awarded “The Artist” their best picture equivalent last weekend if “The Artist” could take the DGA honor its would pretty much lock up best picture.*

*The SAG Awards are expected to go to the more star-friendly ensembles of “The Help” or “The Descendants” or even “Bridesmaids” Sunday night.

A Scorsese win would have been a huge boost to “Hugo” which actually has 11 Oscar nominations to “The Artist’s” 10 and seen as the only real threat at the moment to the almost silent black and white homage winning the big prize.  Instead, the DGA honored Hazanavicus with their honor.  The second year in a row a relatively unknown European director captured the prize (“The King’s Speech’s” Tom Hooper won last year’s honor).  So, while it won’t mean much to the general public, this is a huge win for The Weinstein Company who appear to have their second best picture winner in a row on the horizon.

In other categories, James Marsh, who just debuted the disappointing drama “Shadow Dancer” at Sundance last week, won the documentary directing honor for “Project Nim.”  That critically acclaimed doc was snubbed from an Academy Award nomination and Marsh will have to find some solace in his DGA Awards win tonight.

On the television side, the DGA featured some strange winners including Jon Cassar for “The Kennedsy” in TV Movies/Mini-Series, Patty Jenkins for “The Killing” pilot, Robert B. Weide for the almost forgotten season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and Neil P. Degroot for “The Biggest Loser.” Additionally, Glenn Weiss received some well-deserved recognition for his direction of the 64th Annual Tony Awards.

The complete list of this year’s winners are as follows:

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2011:

Michel Hazanavicus, “The Artist” (The Weinstein Company)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary:
James Marsh, “Project Nim” (Roadside Attractions)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Movies for Television and Mini-Series:
Jon Cassar, “The Kennedys” (Reelz)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Series:
Patty Jenkins, “The Killing,” “Pilot” (AMC)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series:
Robert B. Weide, “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Palestinian Chicken” (HBO)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Musical Variety:
Glenn Weiss, 65th Annual Tony Awards (CBS)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Reality Programs:
Neil P. Degroot, “The Biggest Loser,” “Episode #1115” (NBC)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Daytime Serials:
William Ludel – “General Hospital,” “Intervention” (ABC)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Children”s Programs:
Amy Schatz – A Child”s Garden of Poetry (HBO)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials:
Noam Murro

What did you think of this year’s DGA winners? Share your thoughts below.

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