Directors Guild of America Announces Nominations for the 65th Annual DGA Awards, Including Ben Affleck

     January 8, 2013


The Directors Guild of America has just announced their nominations for “Outstanding Direction in Feature Film” for the 65th Annual DGA Awards.  The nominees are as follows:

These nominations, as well as the omission of certain other directors, carry certain implications heading into the Academy Awards contest.  Hit the jump for more DGA-related news.

ben-affleckFans of Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained and David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook will be quick to notice the lack of love from the DGA.  Just last year, Spielberg was snubbed for his work on War Horsebut he returns to the DGA list of nominees this year for his eleventh nomination.  Affleck lands his first nod, while Bigelow and Hooper both get their second.  Lee, left out of many recent awards conversations, gets his fourth DGA nomination.

Here’s the press release from the DGA:

LOS ANGELES, CA: On January 8, 2013, DGA President Taylor Hackford announced the five nominees for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2012.

“DGA members have chosen an incredibly rich and varied group of filmmakers to nominate for this year’s Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film Award. These directors represent the highest standard of filmmaking, and their films are a testament to artistic achievement, innovative storytelling and the passion that filmmakers share with their audiences,” said Hackford. “Being nominated by their peers is what makes this award particularly meaningful for directors, and I congratulate all of the nominees for their outstanding work.”

The winner will be named at the 65th Annual DGA Awards Dinner on Saturday, February 2, 2013, at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland.

The nominees are (in alphabetical order):

The DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film has traditionally been one of the industry’s most accurate barometers for who will win the Best Director Academy Award. Only six times since the DGA Awards began in 1948 has the Feature Film winner not gone on to win the corresponding Academy Award.

The six exceptions are as follows:

  • 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 selected Mel Gibson for Braveheart.
  • 2000: Ang Lee won the DGA Award for his direction of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon while Steven Soderbergh won the Academy Award for Traffic.
  • 2002: Rob Marshall won the DGA Award for Chicago while Roman Polanski received the Academy Award for The Pianist.

The winner in the Feature Film category will be announced at the 65th Annual DGA Awards dinner and ceremony on Saturday evening, February 2, 2013, at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland.  The DGA Awards will be hosted by director/actor/producer Kelsey Grammer.


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  • sense 11

    Its kind of a travesty that Tarantino wasn’t nominated since he made the most important American movie this year Django Unchained,

  • angelo manuel

    Ben Affleck? Sure, Argo was good. It was a hit. Affleck is a good storyteller, but nowhere near being an Artist. I would at least want a DGA nomination go to someone who’s both a storyteller and an artist. (PT Anderson, Q Tarantino, T Tykwer, Wachowskis anyone..)

    And I could go all day about Tom Hooper. Seriously, what do they see in this guy? Don’t get me wrong, Les Miserable was good but apart from ‘allegedly’ having recorded the actors’ sing live and excessively using the ‘close up’ in his film, he brought nothing special. Les Miserable is awesome because the source material is awesome.

    And him winning for The King’s Speech is ridiculous. He brought nothing new to the underdog story (not that there’s much to do with an underdog story). Firth deserved the Oscar though. The King’s Speech was a good film, yes. But David Fincher should have won all directing honors that year for making The Social Network a modern, Shakespearean Epic!..

    • Um, Sure

      First of all, it’s kind of hilarious to think of The King’s Speech as an underdog story… the King of England is an underdog? But yes, I agree that Tom Hooper’s acclaim as a visionary director is a head scratcher. He is a competent director. Nothing more. Les Mis was a mess, and most of its flaws, aside from the limitations of the source material were in Hooper’s direction. Stop trying to make sense of awards. They are political. They rarely reflect true artistic achievement. They are a way for Hollywood to pat itself on the back. Why else would a movie like Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close even get nominated as film of the year if this was not true?

      • angelo manuel

        Totally agree with the things you said. But I don’t think it’s hilarious at all to think of it as an underdog story. Watching the movie, I didn’t see him as the King of England. I simply saw him as a man trying to overcome himself. People relate to these stories because people root for the ‘underdog’ to succeed in the end. And he did. We’re not trying to make sense of the awards. We’re simply putting out a comment on one of’s articles.

  • Matt

    Fan of Affleck and Hooper but I’m a bit at a loss for the exclusion of Tarantino, considering the field. I’m still sort of trying to wrap my head around the Affleck-love train for Argo. I’ve loved his direction in all three films he’s done, but I’d say its very subtle and perhaps some years worthy of big nods, but this year with such a crowded field…I don’t know. Having yet to see Silver Lining’s Playbook I can’t comment on Russell’s admission. Most of all I’m disappointed Wes Anderson didn’t get a nod for Moonrise Kingdom because I feel its probably the best work he’s done. Obviously the Oscars will have their own story as well, but I’ll find it really hard to swallow a Hooper nod. King’s Speech is a favorite of mine and I think you can sense in Les Mis some of Hooper’s style being those tight tight closeups. Very few people have talked about how he filmed King’s Speech much the same way. That said, it didn’t really work for Les Mis and honestly I think he really messed up with the direction of the film. Even if it wasn’t going to be perfect anyway, he really didn’t pull off epic in a cinematic way. If he gets an Oscar nod it’ll only be to please people, which is kind of pointless because the layman doesn’t care about who wins Director. Only Film, Actor, and Actress.

  • amg907

    I was hoping to see Sam Mendes in there for his work on Skyfall.

    Tarantino deserves it, but its still a toss-up for me in that regard. An argument can be made either way.

    But I would rather have him in the mix than not.

  • nyckage

    This list is flawed but you can’t nominate everybody. I haven’t seen argo as of yet, but I will get to it. Lee created a brilliant film, second best of the year in my opinion. Spielberg was a given. I’m not surprised at Bigelow, with all the hype ZDT is getting. But I did not find Les Mis very appealing, mainly because it did not justice to the book, ofcourse the book is a masterpiece , and it’s unfair to judge it like that. So I judged it in a different manner. Did it make me feel the same way the book did, Did it accomplish what the book was meant to accomplish? It didn’t btw, for me that is. And now to the directer that got low balled. The QT. Django was the best movie by far for me this year, only Pi come close to challenge it for me. So I would replace QT with Hooper.

  • Bob

    This is pretty much what I predicted except for Hooper. I did have Ang Lee, Spielberg,Bigelow, and Affleck on my list and the last choice I think will go to Tarantino or Russel. I’m talking for the Academy Awards. My final guess? Tarantino will get the last nom. But he is battling with Russel atm. Oh, and Bigelow will win her second Oscar.

  • Anonymous

    Serious lack of PT. Anderson, Wes Anderson and Tarantino.

  • Nolan Super Fraud

    Let this be a lesson to the feculent Nolanites that just because you enjoyed a movie doesn’t mean it was well made or deserving of praise. Many enjoyed Transformers but that doesn’t mean it will be praised. The lack of nominations for Rises shows that serious thinkers, unaffected by WB’s hype machine recognize the film as a massive failure. Hopefully this will be a growing experience for all of you. For the rest who still persist that Rises is art, may I direct you to read a parable that’s particularly cogent to this situation: the emperor’s new clothes.

    • sense 11

      You people are so pathetic

    • aj

      Agree.. it´s not the lesson in humility Nolan groupies deserve, but its the one they need right now.

      A lot of whining about Nolan being “snubbed”….sorry. but to be snubbed the movie should be oscar worthy first, and TDKR could not be further from that..

    • Um, Sure

      What is equally pathetic is anyone who thinks that awards season is some kind of validation for one’s own personal bias against a film or a film maker. TDKR wasn’t overlooked because the Powers That Be recognize it as a failure. It was overlooked because of a bias in Hollywood against super hero movies, just like its bias against science fiction and fantasy (LOTR notwithstanding), not to mention the political juggernaut of Who-Runs-The-Best Nominating campaign. Awards are about politics and bias, almost never about substance or quality. Sure, there are great film makers who deserve the acclaim they receive, but the process itself is laughably flawed. Incredibly Loud and Extremely Close proved this last year when it was nominated by the Academy for picture of the year. But keep fooling yourself into thinking that awards validate your hate – or love – of any artist. Because it’s simply self delusion.

  • Anonymous

    I think everyone’s forgetting that this is THE ACADEMY who is voting for these awards. The DGA most certainly have their favorites and their own style and frankly I’m shocked for anyone who actually follows the awards season, to be surprised that Hooper was nominated over Tarantino and Russell. I’m not saying he was or wasn’t deserving, I’m just saying this is how these awards have been going on for years. It’s better to be safe and traditional and there’s no doubt Hooper does an incredible job at that.

  • Strong Enough

    damn no Tarentino? suckers

  • nNark

    For my money, it’s Pepsi over Coke every time. Don’t berate me, it’s just my preference!

  • Chris

    If Ben Affleck was a good director he would have not cast himself in the lead. He is one of the worst actors in Hollyweird.

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