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Directors Guild Awards: Alfonso Cuaron wins for 'Gravity'

UPDATED: Gravity does not seem to be falling on the awards circuit. Alfonso Cuarón walked away with the top honor at the Directors Guild of America Awards Saturday night in Los Angeles, beating out Martin Scorsese, David O. Russell, Paul Greengrass, and Steve McQueen.

“This is truly an honor and I am humbled by it,” Cuarón said to the audience of his peers after last year’s winner Ben Affleck presented him with the award. But Gravity was not the work of just one mind, and no one knows that more keenly than Cuarón. “Directing is about the work of your collaborators,” he said. Earlier in the evening, when Gravity was spotlighted amongst the five Feature Film nominees, Cuarón thanked his team including his first assistant director Josh Robertson, co-writer (and son) Jonas Cuarón, his cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki, and his visual effects team. Then he said: “I barely understand how we made the film.” The audience laughed uproariously.

The DGA Awards are generally a pretty decent indicator for who will walk away with the Best Director Oscar. Comprised of over 15,000 voting members, the Directors Guild does have a tendency to skew more mainstream when compared with the choices of the 377 voting members of the Directors branch in the Academy. But in the past ten years, the DGA winner has gone on to win the Oscar 90% of the time. In fact, in 65 years, only 7 DGA winners failed to win the Academy Award. Last year, however, was a major outlier when Ben Affleck won the DGA for Argo after he’d failed to pick up an Oscar nomination.

The DGA did deviate from the Oscars in other fairly significant ways last year. The nominees only matched 2 out of the 5 Oscar nominees. This year, it was 4 out of 5. Captain Phillips director Paul Greengrass was the odd man out — the Academy included Alexander Payne for his work on Nebraska instead.

For Cuarón, the win only seems to add to his awards momentum. In addition to a host of Film Critics awards, Cuarón also won a Golden Globe earlier this month.

The DGA doesn’t just honor features, though. Oscar nominee Jehane Noujaim picked up an award for her documentary The Square, Steven Soderbergh won for Behind the Candelabra, and Vince Gilligan was recognized for directing the Breaking Bad finale “Felina.” Check out the full list of winners from the 66th Annual DGA Awards after the jump.

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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.

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Jane Lynch to host DGA Awards

Jane Lynch is set to become the first female host of the DGA Awards at its 66th annual ceremony on Jan. 25 in Los Angeles.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jane Lynch as host of the DGA Awards for the very first time,” said DGA President Paris Barclay (who has directed Lynch on a number of Glee episodes). “I have known Jane for years, and have envied her quick wit – and her extraordinary height. She always makes the job of directing her a joy, and I look forward to her helping us honor the year’s best in film and television.”

Previous hosts included Carl Reiner — who led the ceremony an incredible 23 times — and Kelsey Grammer, who hosted for the past two years.

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Ben Affleck wins Directors Guild Award for 'Argo'

prize_fighter1_bannerSome people can win for losing.

Ben Affleck claimed the Directors Guild of America Award for Argo on Saturday in Hollywood’s latest thumb-in-the-eye to the small group of filmmakers in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences who failed to nominate him for an Oscar.

“I worked really, really hard to become the best director I could be, by putting in as [many] hours as I can, and banging my head against a wall, berating myself, lying to myself about whether it’s going to work,” Affleck told the crowd, never mentioning the snub. “Basically, I got to a point where I was nominated for this award. And I don’t think this makes me a real director — but I think it means I’m on my way.”

It’s the third time in its 65-year history that the DGA Award has gone to a filmmaker who was not also up for Best Director at the Academy Awrds. It happened to Ron Howard, who claimed the DGA honor in 1995 for Apollo 13, and Steven Spielberg, who won in 1986 for The Color Purple.

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Report: Directors Guild changes nominations date to not clash with Oscar nominations

A shift in Oscar nominations means a shift for other awards shows.

The Directors Guild of America has moved up the date it’s announcing feature film nominations for next year’s DGA Awards to Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013 to not coincide with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announcing Academy Award nominations Jan. 10, a DGA source told TheWrap.com. Television and commercial DGA Awards nominations will be announced Jan. 9.

The DGA had originally scheduled to announce film nominations on Jan. 10, and TV and commercial nods on Jan. 11. Oscar nominations were originally scheduled for Jan. 15. The Academy announced Tuesday that Oscar nominations would be presented five days earlier.

DGA documentary nominations will still be announced on Monday, Jan. 14, according to TheWrap.com.

Read more:
Academy announces key Oscars dates: nominations moved up five days

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