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Directors of For Sama

Lulu Wang (The Farewell)
Ritesh Batra (Photograph)
Schmidt & Abrantes (Diamantino)
Wanuri Kahiu (Rafiki)
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« Interesting Stats About The 87th Oscars | Main | Why Wes, Why Now? »

Best (Male) Directors - The Chart!

I wish I had time to sketch Wes Anderson riding to the Oscars on a bicycle made of antique tuba parts (thanks Tina & Amy) but alas. It's nomination day. No time for goofing around.

Manly men and the men who love them and direct them and vote for them to win miniature idols of gold men.

The Best Director chart is now up with details on the nominees and gives you the opportunity to vote for your favorite (the poll will be up until two days before the Oscars). If you fuse all the Best Directors together this year into one über Frankenstein director you get a 6 foot tall white brown-haired American man with some Norwegian/Mexican blood in him who's rapidly approaching his half century mark and who has made about 7 movies in his career all told. (There's no way to fuse these five men's temperaments and styles though... despite being very similar in age, height, and Oscar favor they have very different aesthetics and concerns as filmmakers)

On the new Nominated Directors chart, you'll aso learn how each man got his nomination*. Besides having penises that is. That goes without saying in this category so we left their penises off the chart.

• How much did Birdman's showbiz navel-gazing help Inarritu?
• Which was more important for Linklater: conception or execution?
• How crucial was that spring release to Budapest's overall success?
• And did Morten Tyldum benefit from Oscar's World War II fetish?

Find out on the chart! (More charts to follow)

* for entertainment purposes only you understand. We can't know what lurks in the hearts and minds of voters but we love pretending to!

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Reader Comments (23)

Please Nathaniel, do that sketch of Wes Anderson riding a bike made of antique tuba parts! I love your "actressland".

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMona

My personal taste:

1. Miller
2. Iñarritu
3. Anderson
4. Linklater
5. Tyldum

I would be very happy with any of them winning, except Tyldum. I didn't hate his work or anything, I just don't think it compares to the other ones.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

How did such a rich film year culminate into...this?

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterRahul

Rahul - i have a theory that the very best film years always result in lame Oscars. too much wealth to choose from so the dross rises up. (see also: 1999)

January 15, 2015 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Nat, I think you're underestimating Miller. I voted Linklater, but if someone as respectable and with artistic integrity like Jane Campion (along with the Cannes Jury) saw something in him that is lost on everyone else, then your fault. The man was in total control of actors and framed them beautifully. I found it quietly disturbing and sad; and didn't feel at any moment that he was selling me that "look, this is important!" It is what is is. Get your own conclusions (and we all did, oddly different) Imitation Game, on the other hand.... talking about Big Ideas and Importance!

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterchofer

I think all along (well, up until it became clear he was a lock for a nomination) people have been underestimating the World War II connection with Wes Anderson as well. It might be in the background of the film, and it's totally in his style, but The Grand Budapest Hotel is war related. That's literally all it takes.

Just wait till Christopher Nolan announces a WW2 related film and start engraving his award.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterThe Jack

(and I've only just scrolled down and realised that there's a whole post dedicated to that point. Whoops)

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterThe Jack

Timing people. All of these films were out of the gate and in front of voters early. None of them were skimmed (As I suspect Sniper and Selma were, if they were watched in any form before ballots were marked.). None of them were attached to any serious controversy or talk of authenticity issues. The directors branch had time to study and reflect before they voted.

It stings that Selma didn't get more love, but there was no big name attached that demanded attention (If Denzel had been playing MLK, it would have scored far better, like it or not and Oprah (the biggest name) does not exactly have a great track record with AMPAS despite the honorary.). And it needed an earlier release so the LBJ nonsense could die down.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterHenry

Sorry, accomplished work is accomplished work, and the Academy of all people should be aware of the history-making nature of Selma (not just for Ava, but also for the ambition of the movie). And they received screeners. No more blame on manufactured controversy or timing. Sometimes you just have to admit it, AMPAS: You fucked up.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBD

I don't have a problem with Miller's nomination. Of the ones who seemed to have a realistic chance, he would've been in my top five too.

All the Ron Howards of the director's branch obviously voted for Tyldum. It's a lame nomination, but at least preferable to yet another one for Eastwood. In a way, it would've been even worse if American Sniper hadn't gotten in for Picture but Eastwood had been the one who pushed DuVernay out of Director.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJan

Nathaniel-the weird recent exception to that rule was the ridiculously rewarding Best Picture lineup from 2007, in my opinion.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

Oh God, just glancing at the photo of Tom Hooper in the previous winner's banner still incites nausea and the desire to punch him in the face. What a traumatizing year..

I'm as equally baffled how Anderson goes from a typically poor batting average to the most nominations for a film that is good but not his best, nor strikingly different from previous output (IMO). Beyond all the valid reasons mentioned, I think the Academy realized that this man's signature will be well respected and loved for a very long time. They can feel the future embarrassment of never being able to include some of his amazing work in one of their self-glorifying montages.

Also, I agree with Chofer, I think Miller is a very strong filmmaker. I put him and Fukunaga in a pile together, and adore them.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterDino

1. González Iñárritu
2. Anderson
3. Miller
4. Linklater
5. Tyldum

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

We had people like Tom Hooper and Paul Haggis nominated before. I can't believe everyone is complainign because the Academy didn't fill their moral quota. Selma got a best picture nod, you should still be happy and it might pull an Argo if they play the racist/snubbed cards right.
None of these five nominated men did a bad job, none of them.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

1. Linklater
2. Iñárritu
3. Anderson
4. Miller
5. Tyldum

Pretty easy rankin gfor me, all apart from the top two. I loved the virtuosity and playfulness of Iñárritu, but the combination of Linklater's vision and consistency over 12 years is just so impressive. I think I enjoyed Birdman more, but I know I'll never forget Boyhood.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJonny

@Jonny - I completely agree with your list and your sentiments on the frontrunners; Linklater is definitely walking away the winner on Oscar night.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMDA

Sad man, stop trolling every post about Selma. Tacky, not to mention wholly inaccurate (check the reviews).

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBD

You don't know the meaning of trolling. And I'm going to post whatever the fuck I want. There's nothing tacky about my opinion, which by the way can't be inaccurate, it's an opinion. And I do not guide my opinion by reviews. Critics loved The King's Speech and Crash. I'm already tired of people defending Selma as if it was Jesus Christ himself. It got a Best Picture nomination. Only eight films out of all the releases of 2014 can say that. So get over it.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

I am having terrible flashbacks of Kathryn Bigelow's snubbing two years ago. She should have won the damn thing. But the boys club couldn't stand the thought of her possibly winning again. So they did what bullys do.

January 15, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

I'm in favor of a Grand Budapest near sweep (open to it missing out on Cinematography and Costume but everything else..... GO!)

January 16, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSanty C.

Nathaniel, please include the penises on the chart. Except for Morten's.

January 16, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

Ha! Channing Tatum in a singlet! I love you!

January 16, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterbillybil

Ha! Channing Tatum in a singlet! I love you!

January 16, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterbillybil

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