The Directors Guild of America made history on Saturday night, giving the group its top award for feature-film direction. Chloe Zhao (“Nomadland”), the first woman of color to receive the award, and only the second woman to win in the category after Catherine Bigelow (“Hurt Locker”).
Zhao was considered a heavy favorite after a major award-season for his film which also included top honors Golden globe, Critics’ Choice Awards And Producers Guild Awards, And now he will enter Oscar night as a prohibitive front-runner, as the DGA winner has won 13 of the last 15 best-director Oscars.
The best picture win for “Nomadland” seems highly likely: some films have gone on to take the Oscar’s top prize without a first win in the DGA or PGA. Still, one of those curveballs came last year, when “Parasite” Won the best picture without any of those trophies, but after winning a high-profile win Screen actors guild.
A route can be provided for this “Chicago 7 test, ”Which also pulled off a SAG win last week. But although the director of that film, Aaron Sorkin, was nominated alongside Zhao for the DGA Award, he was snapped up for a directorial nomination at the Oscars.
In his acceptance speech, Zhao offered full appreciation for Sorkin – “I can feel my heartbeat with you when I watch your film,” he said – as well as Lee Isaac Chung for the other nominees. (“Minari”), Emerald Fennell (“promising young lady”), and David Fincher (“Munk”).
And although he did not win, Fitcher may have gained the line of the night when he was asked to sum up his career: “Directing,” Fincher said, “a little bit that paint a watercolor from four blocks away. Trying on a telescope, walkie-talkie, and 85 people holding brushes. “
In other news at the virtual event, the first feature-film direction award went to Darius Murder for “Sound of Metal”, while the documentary was awarded to Michael Dweck and Gregory Korshav for “The Trophy Hunters”, which was snatched. Was by Oscar.
Here is the complete list of winners:
Feature: Chloe Zhao, “Nomadland”
First time facility: Darius Marder, “Sound of Metal”
Documentation: Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw, “Truffle Hunters”
Television movies and limited series: Scott Frank, “The Queen’s Gambit”
Dramatic Series: Leslie Linka Glutter, “Homeland”
comedy series: Susanna Fogel, “Flight Attendant”
Variety / talk / news / sports (regularly scheduled): Don Roy King, “Saturday Night Live”
Variety / talk / news / sports (special): Thomas Slam, “A West Wing Special to Benefit We All All Votes”
Reality Program: Joseph Guidry, “Full Bloom”
advertisement: Melina Matsukas, dr. “You Love Me” by Dre for Beats
Children’s Program: Amy Shatz, “We the Dream: The Kids of the Auckland MLK Oratorical Fest”