The nominees for the 66th annual Directors Guild of America (DGA) Awards were revealed today, narrowing the Oscar race considerably as the industry precursor has long been an indicator for which way the Academy might fall. So those who missed the cut this morning – the Coen brothers, Spike Jonze, Alexander Payne – will be facing a steep uphill climb after today.
But it’s worth it to remember that the DGA is a much, much broader group than the Academy’s directors branch. Indeed, that roughly 400-member group (compared to the DGA’s vast 14,000) can make eclectic choices, like just last year going for Michael Haneke, David O. Russell and Benh Zeitlin over DGA nominees Ben Affleck, Kathryn Bigelow and Tom Hooper. So there’s hope yet for some of these folks, but a Best Picture win for a film not nominated by the DGA is virtually unheard of: the only films to do so are Bruce Beresford’s “Driving Miss Daisy” in 1989 and Laurence Olivier’s “Hamlet” in 1948.
Then again, these stats are increasingly meaningless. After all, just last year, a film that didn’t have a corresponding Best Director Oscar nomination winning Best Picture was virtually unheard of, and we all know how that panned out.
And now, yes, as previewed, “American Hustle” is the only film to get the major guild quartet.* Is it coming up the middle on the way to a Best Picture win? It very well may be.
Check out the full list of DGA nominees below, and as ever, remember to keep track of the season via The Circuit.
David O. Russell, “American Hustle”
Paul Greengrass, “Captain Phillips”
Alfonso Cuarón, “Gravity”
Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”
Martin Scorsese, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
And on the documentary side (added 1/13):
Joshua Oppenheimer, “The Act of Killing”
Lucy Walker, “The Crash Reel”
Zachary Heinzerling, “Cutie and the Boxer”
Jehane Noujaim, “The Square”
Sarah Polley, “Stories We Tell”
The 66th annual DGA Awards will be held on Saturday, Jan. 25.
*Since apparently there are those who need the obvious stated, yes, “12 Years a Slave” was ineligible for WGA.