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Entries in DGA (10)

Monday
Jan272014

Podcast: Sundance Debrief and DGA Reactions

On this week's special cross-country podcast recorded live from Utah, Nathaniel welcomes back Katey Rich in New York, Nick Davis in Chicago, and special guest Guy Lodge, also in Chicago en route to London. Guy and Nathaniel share their Sundance favorites, the chief crossover being Richard Linklater's Boyhood

Other Topics include: The Producers Guild of America and Directors Guild winners and what that might mean for 12 Years a Slave and Gravity come Oscar night, categories where we'd enjoy ties on Oscar night, and favorite "overheard" bits in movie theater lines regarding Dallas Buyers Club and Philomena

You can listen to the podcast right here at the bottom of the post or download the conversation on iTunes. Continue the conversation in the comments! 

Which tie would you love to see this year?

Sundance Debrief and Oscar Ties

Sunday
Jan262014

Cuarón Takes DGA

In non-surprising awards news Alfonso Cuarón has won the Directors Guild of America prize for his long-in-the-making sci-fi epic Gravity. Though I've long been predicting him to win the Oscar, the Best Picture race still seems competitive. It's insane that 12 Years a Slave, a magnificent film and a historically significant drama in several ways, isn't steamrolling but it isn't. My guess is that even if Gravity sweeps the craft categories, Best Picture will be a nail biter down to the last envelope opening. The most famous 'dominated the Oscars but still lost Best Picture' year is, of course, 1972. Cabaret won 8 Oscars but The Godfather beat it in two of the top 8 categories Adapted Screenplay & the big kahuna Best Picture. The end result: they were both winners. Cabaret took home a lot of Oscars and has the impressive distinction of being the biggest winner among all Best Picture losers. (There are some who think that 2002 was heading toward a similar outcome had The Pianist had another month to gain momentum on Chicago) 

Will we see another split year? No predominantly black film has ever won Best Picture which is depressing and bad news for 12 Years a Slave but no sci-fi film has won either which isn't exactly points in Gravity's favor. 12 Years has to convince voters who are resisting it to see the picture (if you ask me, AMPAS voters who won't watch all the Best Picture nominees each year before voting really ought to have their memberships revoked) and it needs to find a second wind with the media who have a predictable way of turning on frontrunners each year. I fear a Brokeback Mountain situation where the less evolved voters just won't give a seminal work its due because of the subject matter. Am I too pessimistic?

Gravity has the potentially easier task in that it only needs to convince voters that it isn't lightweight and that it won't age poorly (I'm not convinced on the latter). And, since it hasn't truly been the frontrunner at any point, it doesn't have much backlash to conquer. I'm leaning toward predicting Gravity to just (nearly) sweep the whole thing.

Tuesday
Jan072014

DGA Howls for Scorsese, Russell and Three First-Timers

The Directors Guild of America, more commonly referred to as simply DGA, have announced their nominees for the film year, and the expected nominees prevailed… with the possible exception of the final slot, alphabetically and most in doubt, which went to Martin Scorsese for his controversial satire.

The nominees are…


  • Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity (first time DGA nominee)
  • Paul Greengrass, Captain Philllips (first time DGA nominee)
  • Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave (first time DGA nominee)
  • David O. Russell, American Hustle (second DGA nomination though curiously not honored in 2012 when Silver Linings Playbook was all the rage)
  • Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street (12th DGA honor*)

In the past DGA nominees were literally the surest indication of which five movies would be nominated for Oscar’s Best Picture, even moreso than accurate bellweathers of what would happen in the director race itself. But since the upheavals in Academy voting since 2009, it’s tough to say what they mean anymore since Best Picture nominations are so much easier to come by. But whatever it means it is certainly not good news for the Coen brothers (Inside Llewyn Davis), Alexander Payne (Nebraska), or Spike Jonze (Her) all of whom have been nominated by the DGA in previous years.

In the past four years (2009-2012) of the DGA nominations 15 of 20 of their selections went on to be Oscar nominated in the same category with 2012 being famously divisive between the two awards groups – only 2 of the DGA’s choices made it to the Oscar lineup in a real surprise shake-up. But despite those disagreements only 1 of the DGA’s 20 selections in the past four years did NOT receive a Best Picture nomination (David Fincher’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo which won five Oscar nominations and 1 actual statue) so all five of these movies are likely to be Best Picture nominated

… yes, even The Wolf of Wall Street despite the defensive game it’s been playing the media. The Wolf of Wall Street’s current situation has been compared to Zero Dark Thirty’s last year (both here and elsewhere) and Zero Dark Thirty, like Dragon Tattoo, went on to five Oscar nominations and 1 win. So smart money…and by smart money I mean “people who believe in crazy coincidences of Oscar numerology” should expect 5 nominations and one win for Wolf, though not in Best Director and maybe not in Best Picture. In short: we know not a damn thing about how this will play out!

* It’s worth noting that Martin Scorsese is a beloved icon to the Directors Guild of America, having won television, narrative feature, and documentary honors. They’ve been slightly more generous with him over the years than Oscar has. As with Oscar he’s only won their top prize once (also for The Departed) but they’ve given him a lifetime achievement prize as well as nominating him for two pictures that Oscar did not recognize him for: Taxi Driver and The Age of Innocence. The only time the Oscars recognized him when the DGA didn’t was for The Last Tempation of Christ.

Tuesday
Jan082013

Nom Nom Nom: The DGA's.

Hey, lovelies. Beau here, with the announcement of the DGA Nominees for 2013 whilst Nathaniel lunches with one of them.

  • Ben Affleck, Argo 
  • Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty
  • Tom Hooper, Les Miserables
  • Ang Lee, Life of Pi
  • Steven Spielberg, Lincoln

And so, the open spot goes to Tom Hooper, a recent recipient a couple years back for his work on The King’s Speech. If anything must be said about Les Miserables, it is that it is indeed a director’s vision; the intimacy of the camera superseding the largeness of the story in an effort to maximize the full emotional impact of the musical.

While I have many issues with the film, Hooper’s vision does lend itself well to Hathaway’s ‘I Dreamed a Dream’, the strongest scene in the film. Observing despair and bottling it in a shot that would have made Bergman proud, his attention to detail in Hathaway makes for something profoundly intimate and personal. That the rest of the film never lives up to this moment is not really surprising; its pacing and its reticence to self-edit do it a disservice, as the film never really gives its audience a moment to breathe and take in the considerable emotional toll. 

That being said, this is the lineup many have been predicting for quite some time now, give or take Hooper in place of Russell or Tarantino.  We’ll just have to see if Oscar feels the same way come Thursday morning.

Until then, dears. xo, Beau

Thursday
Nov012012

A Handful of Link

Pop Elegantarium Alexa's Rosemary's Baby costume she was hinting at the other day in her Curio column. Well done!
/Film new images from Django Unchained
In Contention interviews the production designer of Moonrise Kingdom Adam Stockhausen
Big Thoughts From a Small Mind has a mea culpa about Sidney Lumet in 12 Angry Men. Confession: I myself have never seen this movie but I have seen productions of the play so I am unschooled in the furious dozen

 

Unreality reminds us that with that Star Wars purchase, Disney now also owns a certain fedora wearing archaelogist adventurer 
Monkey See predicts several headlines that will appear when the new Star Wars film is released in 2015. Hee
Awards Daily wonders if the lack of the DGA before Oscar nominations, might throw off the usual correlations
Vimeo if you're already missing Halloween -- it was kind of unsatisfying here on the East Coast without the usual festivities -- here's a creepy impressive 30 second short called "Rot" 

And we end with a very well cut fan vid 'James Bond Death Match,' all six Bonds fighting it out for supremacy.

I demand another rematch.

Sunday
Jan292012

DGA to Oscar? Hazanavicius Nears Finish Line

This weekend everyone is a winner! So many awards. And SAG continues the trend tonight (we'll be live blogging right here). Can clapping for 30 days straight give you carpal tunnel?

Let's start with the biggie, the DGA Awards. Last year's winner Tom Hooper (The King's Speech) passed the baton, in the shape of that golden eagle plaque, to this year's winner Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist). Tom Hooper got ambitious post awards flurry as is busy on Les Miserable. Hazanavicius will chase The Artist with another film inspired by Old Hollywood. He's going to remake The Search (1948) which The Film Experience readers will know as Montgomery Clift's debut. (All we can say is good luck finding another Monty. That's an irreplaceable star in Hollywood's firmament.) Given that The Search is a post World War II drama about an American soldier and a child who survived Auschwitz, maybe Hazanavicius won't be a one hit wonder with AMPAS. Time will tell.

One of the best things about the more specific awards night like the DGA is that there is time to honor the nomineees as well, so even if you don't win, the night is still about you. Each director takes the stage to receive their plaque. Kathy Bates accepted in person for Woody Allen who never shows up at this sort of thing although he did speak via satellite this time. 

Michelle Williams with James Marsh's prizeDGA PRIZES

  • Director, Feature Film: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
  • Director, Documentary: James Marsh, Project Nim (which was recently shut out of the Oscar nominations in its category)
  • Director, MiniSeries: John Cassar, The Kennedys
  • Director, Drama Series: Patty Jenkins, The Killing "Pilot"
  • Director, Comedy Series: Robert B Weide, Curb Your Enthusiasm "Palestinian Chicken" (wow. people are still excited about this show? Who knew?)
  • Director, Variety: Glenn Weiss, the 64th Annual Tony Awards
  • Director, Reality Show: Neil P Degroot, Biggest Loser
  • Director, Commercial: Noam Murro (Biscuit Filmworks)
  • Director, Daytime Television: William Luel, General Hospital "Intervention"
  • Director, Children's Television:  Amy Schatz, A Child's Garden of Poetry

Does this mean Hazanavicius has the Oscar sewn up?
Not necessarily...  More after the jump including stats and photos. 

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan092012

DGA Nominees

The nominations for the 64th annual Director's Guild Awards have been announced. Shortlisting here is one of the surest signs of industry support and future Oscar nominations for both directors and the films.

Woody Allen for Midnight in Paris
Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist
David Fincher for The Girl with dragon Tattoo
Alexander Payne for The Descendants
Martin Scorsese for Hugo

Who This Helps: Fincher and that girl with the tattoo. It's surging at the right time despite audiences not falling in love with it.
Who This Hurts: Spielberg who the DGA usually loves. If he didn't place here that's big trouble for War Horse.

The 64th Annual DGA Awards will take place on Saturday, January 28, 2012 in the Grand Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland in Los Angeles. Just four days after Oscar nominations are announced, someone will win this super coveted prize. And that remains a very big deal. The DGA, like so many other awards-giving bodies, is proud of their Oscar predictive status. They're official bragging rights go like so:


The DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film has traditionally been a near perfect barometer for the Best Director Academy Award. Only six times since the DGA Award's inception has the DGA Award winner not won the Academy Award:

 

Spielberg has 6 Oscar nominations and 2 wins for directing. He's even more popular with the DGA with 10 noms and 3 wins for the same filmography..1968: Anthony Harvey won the DGA Award for The Lion in Winter while Carol Reed took home the Oscar® for Oliver!. 1972: Francis Ford Coppola received the DGA's nod for The Godfather while the Academy selected Bob Fosse for Cabaret. 1985: Steven Spielberg received his first DGA Award for The Color Purple while the Oscar® went to Sydney Pollack for Out of Africa. 1995: Ron Howard was chosen by the DGA for his direction of Apollo 13 while Academy voters cited Mel Gibson for Braveheart. In 2001 Ang Lee took home the DGA Award for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, while the Oscar went to Steven Soderbergh for Traffic. In 2003 Roman Polanski received the Academy Award for The Pianist, but the DGA Award went to Rob Marshall for Chicago.


Looking over that list it's clear to me (though your take may vary) that when Oscar differs from the DGA it's a toss up as to whether or not it's an improvement. A toss up leaning Oscar's way.

P.S. The nominations for television, documentary and commercial directorial achievements will be announced tomorrow. 

Related Page: Best Director Oscar Predictions which will obviously need to be updated now. Predicting awardage during a blissfully volatile awards season, is like making your bed every morning. A beautiful cozy bed that you can't wait to sleep in again. Loving this year!