‘La La Land’, ‘Game of Thrones’ & ‘The Night Of’ Take Top Honors at Directors Guild Awards

     February 5, 2017


The La La Landslide continues. The Directors Guild of America held its awards ceremony last night, and it’s usually a nail-biting affair as Oscar prognosticators like myself look to see which film has the momentum going into the Best Picture race. This year, however, the writing’s been on the wall for some time now, and La La Land director Damien Chazelle’s DGA win for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Feature Film all but seals the deal that La La Land is probably your Best Picture winner.

Why can this inference be made? Well, those who vote for the DGA Awards have voting overlap with those who vote for Oscars, and the winner of the DGA for Best Director gives us an idea of which film has broad support within a large voting body. Nine of the last 10 DGA winners went on to win Best Picture for his or her film, and since 2002, the DGA winner has won the Best Director Oscar every time except once (that one outlier was Ben Affleck winning the DGA for Argo after being snubbed out of an Oscar nom).

But the DGA Awards are great because they recognize all kinds of directors. This was the second year they handed out a “Best First Feature” award, which Ex Machina’s Alex Garland won last year. Lion filmmaker Garth Davis—who was also nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Feature Film—won the award this year. Meanwhile, on the TV side, Miguel Sapochnik won Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Dramatic Series for his work on Game of Thrones with the buzzworthy episode “Battle of the Bastards.”

Check out a full list of winners and nominees below.