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Category: DGA Awards

Awards season comes early: Directors Guild OKs movie screeners

May 7, 2012 |  1:08 pm

Michel Hazanavicius

Hollywood's award season might not kick off for another few months, but when it does, campaigners will have some new names to add to their movie screener mailing list: The Directors Guild of America has reversed a long-standing policy that prohibited its members from watching on screeners films in contention for the organization's annual awards.

The DGA will follow the actions of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences, the Screen Actors Guild and other industry organizations, which allow their voting members to watch eligible films on DVD or online screeners.

"There's nothing better than watching a movie on the big screen, exactly as the director intended," DGA President Taylor Hackford said in a statement. "But it's not always possible for our members to get to the theater to see every film in awards contention. For that reason, the national board has decided to allow members to receive 'for your consideration' screeners."

The DGA was the last holdout in allowing members to view screeners (though, in truth, a certain percentage of its members, those who belong to other guilds or the film academy, likely had already been receiving the DVDs in the mail). The group crafted the policy to counter any potential bias in favor of larger studio films with more marketing means, fearing those movies would have an advantage over smaller, independently made films unable to spend the funds necessary to distribute DVDs.

The guild said it changed course to appease its membership, both those living outside metropolitan areas and others unable to attend theatrical screenings.

The DGA's national board made the decision at its meeting Saturday.

The guild said it would continue to operate its theatrical screening program in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, London and Washington, D.C.


Fox to put awards screeners on iTunes for SAG members

Weighing the success of SAG's iTunes screener experiment

--Nicole Sperling

 Photo: "The Artist's" Michel Hazanavicius won the DGA's top prize at the body's 2012 awards ceremony. Credit: Chris Pizello /Associated Press.

Martin Scorsese receives 10th DGA nomination

January 12, 2012 | 10:48 am

Three days after earning a feature film nomination for the Directors Guild of America Award for "Hugo," Oscar-winning filmmaker Martin Scorsese is back in the guild's nomination circle.

Scorsese earned a nomination for outstanding directorial achievement in documentary Thursday for "George Harrison: Living in the Material World." It is his 10th DGA nomination; he won the feature film award five years ago for "The Departed."

Other documentary nominees are Joe Berlinger & Bruce Sinofsky for "Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory," Steve James for "The Interrupters," James Marsh for "Project Nim" and Richard Press for "Bill Cunningham New York." Press is the only first-time nominee among the five.

The awards will be handed out at a ceremony at the Grand Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland on Jan. 28.


Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese receive nominations for DGA Award

Documentary examines George Harrison

--Susan King

Photo: George Harrison. Credit: Robert Whitaker/Apple Corps. Ltd.

DGA to Fincher: Sorry about last year, can we make it up to you?

January 9, 2012 |  3:47 pm

Rooney Mara stars in David Fincher's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Now let us just say from the outset that it is possible that Directors Guild of America voters simply liked David Fincher's mesmerizing way with bleakness in "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" more than Steven Spielberg's shout-outs to John Ford in "War Horse." Certainly, members didn't share Fincher's sentiments that "Dragon Tattoo" might be just a tad too dark for awards consideration.

But there has to be something more to today's DGA Awards nominations that put Fincher in alongside Martin Scorsese ("Hugo"), Michel Hazanavicius ("The Artist"), Alexander Payne ("The Descendants") and Woody Allen ("Midnight in Paris"), doesn't there? DGA voters clearly dig Fincher, handing him his third nomination in four years. Of course, they haven't liked him enough to actually give him the award in this category, even last year when most had Fincher winning for "The Social Network." Could this year's nomination be viewed as an attempt to put that whole giving it to Tom Hooper thing behind them? Or could it merely be another signal of a changing of the guard? (Spielberg hasn't been nominated since 2005's "Munich" -- not that he has given voters much reason or occasion to look his way.)

Fincher won't win this year, either. But, taken with the Producers Guild nomination for "Tattoo," it is possible that both he and the movie will now show up among the Oscar anointed. More often than not, four of the five DGA nominees go on to receive Oscar nods. Figuring that Scorsese, Hazanavicius and Payne are locks and that Allen seems increasingly likely to receive his first director's nomination since "Bullets Over Broadway," the question now is: Will the DGA slate sweep in clean with the motion picture academy, as has happened twice in the past decade? Or can Spielberg slip in, aided by the academy's older sentimentalists?

A third option and, admittedly, one that with today's news and previous snubs from the PGA, Screen Actors Guild and Writers Guild seems something of a pipe dream, is that academy voters will go the auteur route and nominate Terrence Malick. "The Tree of Life" has its hard-core disciples, but they are vastly outnumbered by those who hit the eject button once the dinosaurs showed up. Oscar prognosticators have long assumed that "Tree" had enough bedrock support to win nominations for picture (provided devotees slotted it No. 1 or No. 2 on their ballots), director and cinematography. Now only director of photography Emmanuel Lubezki seems a safe bet.


Academy adopts new rules for documentaries

'Iron Lady,' 'Hugo' among films shortlisted for makeup Oscar

Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese receive nominations for DGA Award

 -- Glenn Whipp

Photo: Rooney Mara stars in David Fincher's "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." Credit: Merrick Morton / Columbia TrStar

Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese receive nominations for DGA Award

January 9, 2012 | 10:54 am


This post has been corrected. See below for details.

There's only one newcomer to the feature film nominees announced Monday for the 64th annual DGA Awards: Michel Hazanavicius for "The Artist."

Not only is it the 44-year-old French filmmaker's first nomination from the Directors Guild of America, it also is the first time that guild has nominated a silent film in the feature category.

Earning his fifth DGA nomination is Woody Allen, 76, for the comedy "Midnight in Paris." He won the top DGA Award 34 years ago for "Annie Hall." He was also nominated for 1979's "Manhattan," 1986's "Hannah and Her Sisters" and 1989's "Crime and Misdemeanors." He also earned a DGA Lifetime Achievement honor in 1996.

David Fincher, 49, picked up his third DGA feature nomination for the thriller "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." He earned his first feature nod three years ago for "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" and last year for "The Social Network." He won the DGA Commercial Award in 2003 and was also nominated in that category four years ago.

Alexander Payne, 50, earned his second DGA feature nomination for the family drama "The Descendants." He was previously nominated for 2004's "Sideways." Last week, Payne received a  Writers Guild of America nomination for the script of "The Descendants."

Rounding out the five nominees is Martin Scorsese, 69, for his valentine to the movies, "Hugo." He won the DGA Award for feature films five years ago for "The Departed" and in the TV category last year for "Boardwalk Empire."  "Hugo" marks his ninth DGA Award nomination. In 1999, he was given the Filmmaker Award at the first DGA honors gala and was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003.

"I am honored to have been recognized by my peers for my work on "Hugo," Scorsese said in a statement.  "It means a great deal to me to have the respect of my peers. The fact that our picture honors the work of Georges Méliès, one of the inventors of cinema and an artistic forefather to us all, makes the nomination all the more meaningful."

Notably missing from the list of nominees are Steven Spielberg for "War Horse" and Terrence Malick for "The Tree of Life." Malick won the National Society of Film Critics Award for his direction this past Saturday.

The DGA Awards are considered one of the most reliable bellwethers for the best director Oscar: Only six times have the guild and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences disagreed on a year's best director of a feature film. The last time was nine years ago when Rob Marshall won the DGA for "Chicago" and Roman Polanski received the Academy Award for "The Pianist."

The DGA Awards will be handed out Jan. 28 at the Grand Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland. Kelsey Grammer will be the host.

[For the Record, Jan. 9 3:34 p.m.: An early version of this post misstated the name of Alexander Payne's 2004 film "Sideways" as "Sidewalks."]


Tom Hooper wins top honor from the Directors Guild of America

"Martin Scorsese to be honored for film and music work"

"After 'Midnight,' Woody Allen keeps clocking in"


-- Susan King

Photo: Martin Scorsese was nominated by the Directors Guild of America for "Hugo." Photo: Jaap Buitendijk / Paramount Pictures



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