Forget the Golden Globes nominations as indicators for the Oscars. A far better bellwether when it comes to Oscar’s inclinations are the Directors Guild Awards nominees, which were announced today.
There have only been six instances since 1948 in which the winner of the DGA award did not go on to win the Oscar. And best picture tends to follow director (or vice versa) often spawning a host of other nominations along the way.
The only thing surprising about this year’s nominees is that they are uniformly worthy, reflecting a tight Oscar race overall. The nominees are:
Woody Allen for “Midnight in Paris.” Woody is a five-time DGA nominee who won for “Annie Hall” in 1977. He was given a lifetime achievement award by the DGA in 1996.
David Fincher for “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” A slight surprise here and probably the longest shot. But Fincher is a Guild favorite, this being his third nomination.
Michel Hazanavicius for “The Artist.” If he can score here, he will score at the Oscars. The big question in both races is whether his newcomer status will work against him.
Alexander Payne for “The Descendants.” Payne’s second DGA nom and a fine film, but somehow it just doesn’t feel Big enough for Oscar.
Martin Scorsese for “Hugo.” This is Marty’s mind-blowing ninth DGA nomination; he won in 2006 for “The Departed” (same at the Oscars). The film certainly has size, and like “The Artist,” it salutes moviemaking.