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Tag: Best Director Oscar (1-10 of 36)

Directors Guild nominees: Martin Scorsese in, but no Spike Jonze

The Directors Guild of America announced its feature film nominees today and the list is full of fairly safe bets: Alfonso Cuaron for Gravity, Steve McQueen for 12 Years a Slave and David O. Russell for American Hustle.

The other two contenders selected by the DGA were Martin Scorsese for The Wolf of Wall Street and Paul Greengrass for Captain Phillips.

The question is whether the Oscar nominations will follow suit this time, or veer into surprise territory like last year.


Oscar predictions: 18 days to go

We’re finally in the homestretch of the Oscar season, and I’m happy to say we have a handful of real races on our hands this year. Best Actor continues to befuddle me, while Best Actress and Best Adapted Screenplay could both offer surprises on Feb. 26 . At this point I’m thinking Hugo screenwriter John Logan could capitalize on all the support for the film — not to mention the fact that he’s a sole credited writer, which always helps. At this week’s Oscar nominees luncheon, I was taken aback by the tremendous amount of goodwill directed at Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close supporting-actor nominee Max von Sydow. (Perhaps because Christopher Plummer wasn’t there, von Sydow received an inordinate amount of octogenarian love.) Do I suddenly think von Sydow could beat Plummer? No, but he definitely moves up a few rungs in my rankings this week. On today’s episode of my series Nominated With Dave Karger, we take a closer look at Extremely Loud.

Best Picture
1. The Artist (last week: 1) READ FULL STORY

Today on 'Moneyball' and Best Directors

If you need an Academy Awards fix for your Friday, head to, where we’ve just premiered episode 3 of my 10-part series, Nominated with Dave Karger. Today’s installment focuses on Moneyball, which scored a total of six nominations this year. Its best shot at a win? Aaron Sorkin and Steven Zaillian’s screenplay. Also on the site, I discuss this year’s Best Director nominees (and a few other topics) with film critic Ben Lyons on Shira Lazar’s Oscar Dailies show. If you ever wanted to know my favorite moment from my favorite movie, now is your chance.

And follow me on Twitter @davekarger.

George Clooney on his Oscar-nominated 'Descendants' role -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

One of the biggest question marks at this point in the awards season is Alexander Payne and George Clooney’s domestic drama The Descendants. It emerged from the Telluride and Toronto film festivals as the movie with the loudest buzz and scored rave reviews across the board upon its release in December. It has performed well with every major awards body, most notably winning the Best Drama and Best Actor prizes at the Golden Globes. Then it picked up five Oscar nominations, including Best Director and Best Editing, indicating strong overall support. But it hit a snag this past weekend, as The Artist‘s Jean Dujardin beat Clooney for the Best Actor SAG Award, while The Help took the Best Cast trophy.


Oscar predictions: Can Jean Dujardin beat George Clooney?

Last night’s Screen Actors Guild Award results certainly made at least one Oscar category a lot more interesting. Jean Dujardin’s win changed Best Actor from a race between George Clooney and Brad Pitt to a fight between Clooney and Dujardin. And as we’ve seen over the years (The King’s Speech, Gladiator, American Beauty), the Academy often likes to pair up Best Picture and Best Actor. I’m not quite ready to predict Dujardin as the Oscar winner just yet, but after I talk to some more voters, I may change my mind in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, The Help‘s Best Cast win (one of three victories for the film last night) was a wonderful moment for that group of actors, but history is not on its side when it comes to its Oscar chances next month. The last time a film won Best Picture without writing or directing nominations was all the way back in 1932. In my mind, The Artist—which has won the Producers Guild and Directors Guild awards—is still the clear favorite. Even though there are several films that lost Best Picture after winning the PGA and DGA (among them Brokeback Mountain and Saving Private Ryan), I don’t sense another film with enough overall support to unseat it. So here are my current rankings in the top 8 categories.


'The Artist' wins big at the Directors Guild Awards

The Directors Guild of America announced its annual awards tonight at a ceremony in the Grand Ballroom above the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. The Artist‘s Michel Hazanavicius took home the prize for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Feature Film. Fellow nominees Martin Scorsese (Hugo) and Alexander Payne (The Descendants) also spoke at the event while accepting their nomination medallions. As is his custom for awards events, nominee Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris) was not present; nominee David Fincher (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) had to fly to the premiere of his film in Tokyo, Japan, although he did attend the nominee breakfast Saturday morning.

Hosted by Kelsey Grammer, the evening also feted directors for feature documentaries, and TV dramas, comedies, reality shows, made-for-TV movies and miniseries, soap operas, children’s programming, and commercials.

Since 1948, the DGA Award winner for feature film has gone on to win the Academy Award for Best Director every year save for six exceptions, most recently when Rob Marshall took home the DGA Award for Chicago in 2002, while Roman Polanski won the Oscar for The Pianist.

Check out the full list of winners below: READ FULL STORY

Directors Guild Award: Who will win?

In each of the last eight years, the winner of the Directors Guild of America Award went on to win the Best Director trophy at the Oscars. And in nine of the last 10 years, the DGA-winning film ended up taking Best Picture. So all eyes will be on tomorrow night’s DGA Awards, where The Artist‘s Michel Hazanavicius, Hugo‘s Martin Scorsese, Midnight in Paris‘ Woody Allen, The Descendants‘ Alexander Payne, and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo‘s David Fincher will compete for the evening’s biggest prize.

After dominating this week’s Oscar nominations, clearly The Artist and Hugo are the two top contenders for the DGA as well. Though both films share an affection for a bygone age of cinema, their directors couldn’t be more different: Hazanavicius, 44, is a relative newcomer with only three goofy French-language films under his belt, while Scorsese, 69, is a nine-time DGA nominee (and two-time winner, for 2006’s The Departed and HBO’s Boardwalk Empire). Hazanavicius is helped by the fact that Scorsese took the feature prize only five years ago. Either man could win, but my hunch is that just as rookie Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) bested Fincher (The Social Network) last year, the less-experienced Hazanavicius will pull out the victory tomorrow.

Check back here tomorrow night for the results. And my colleague Adam B. Vary will have a complete on-the-scene report as well.

Dave on Twitter: @davekarger

Directors Guild nominees: Fincher in, Spielberg out

The Directors Guild Awards, perhaps the most predictive pre-Oscar prize of the season, has thrown quite a wrench into the Oscar race with its list of five nominees for Best Director of the year. Along with The Artist‘s Michel Hazanivicius, Hugo‘s Martin Scorsese, The Descendants‘ Alexander Payne, and Midnight in Paris‘ Woody Allen, the DGA named The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo‘s David Fincher over touted contenders like War Horse‘s Steven Spielberg and The Tree of Life‘s Terrence Malick. Dragon Tattoo has now been nominated by the Directors, Writers, and Producers Guilds. Could it snag a Best Picture nod on Jan. 24 as well? It’s certainly looking likelier than The Tree of Life, which has now officially been shut out by all four guilds.

Check back tomorrow for my updated predictions in the six main races.

Dave on Twitter: @davekarger

'Descendants' premiere: George Clooney vs. Alexander Payne for Best Director?

Back in 2005, George Clooney was nominated for three Academy Awards — for supporting acting in Syriana (he won) and for writing and directing Good Night, and Good Luck (he lost). This year, he’s a potential contender in multiple categories and dueling films again, juggling manifold duties in his Ides of March and starring in The Descendants, which had its Hollywood premiere last night. He’s a favorite to earn an Oscar nominee for his leading role as a Hawaiian attorney who stumbles on the fact that his now-comatose wife was cheating on him. But what might turn out to be a more interesting subplot to the Oscar season is if the film’s director, Alexander Payne, competes against Clooney for Best Director. READ FULL STORY

'Dragon Tattoo' director David Fincher talks Oscar campaigning and his new film's chances

Nobody has seen David Fincher’s much-anticipated film version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (in theaters Dec. 21), but there’s already Oscar buzz building for Rooney Mara (Lisbeth Salander) and director David Fincher, who’s been nominated twice before (for The Social Network and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button). So what does Fincher think about Dragon Tattoo‘s Oscar chances? “There’s too much anal rape in this movie” to get nominated, he says, half-jokingly. “I think we’re very safe.”

Fincher says he isn’t preparing for the Oscar process, but he points out that “we didn’t gear up for it last time, either” (2010’s Social Network scored eight nominations). And he’s not opposed to campaigning, especially if it helps out his collaborators. READ FULL STORY

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