Back to IndieWire

DGA Feature Award Goes to ‘Birdman,’ Gaining Oscar Momentum; Women Score

DGA Feature Award Goes to 'Birdman,' Gaining Oscar Momentum; Women Score

Medallions were presented to all five feature film directors (who participated in a symposium earlier Saturday), as “American Sniper” star Bradley Cooper took time off from playing “The Elephant Man” to present to 84-year-old Clint Eastwood, who earned a rousing standing ovation. He did a solid Eastwood imitation, describing the director kneeling down in the dirt with a hand-held camera for a tricky shot and asking bulky Cooper to jump over him, kicking up dust. Eastwood laughed. 
He didn’t win the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film, though–that went to AG Iñárritu for “Birdman,” the second Mexican in a year to win–Alfonso Cuarón handed his amigo the prize. He won last year for “Gravity–and went on to win the Oscar. That could happen again. The DGA winner often presages Best Picture, too.

“Birdman” also took home the PGA and SAG ensemble awards and is nominated for nine Academy Awards including Best Picture. Early Oscar frontrunner “Boyhood” is still in the race, though, along with late-surging”American Sniper,” which earned a rousing welcome at the DGA. 

Actor Jane Lynch hosted the kudofest in front of more than 1,600 guests.  Presenters included (in alphabetical order): DGA President Paris Barclay; Chadwick Boseman; Pierce Brosnan; Glen Charles; Les Charles; Bradley Cooper; Alfonso Cuarón; Julie Delpy; Jodie Foster; Taraji P. Henson; January Jones; Michael Mann; Lea Michele; Don Mischer; Bill Murray; Katey Sagal; Barbra Streisand; and DGA First Vice President Betty Thomas. After a provocative montage of footage of first films, Steven Spielberg announced a new DGA award starting in 2016 to honor outstanding achievement from a first time director. 

“I truly think none of us has been trying to make a film, saying let’s make a bad film,” said Gonzalez Iñárritu in his acceptance speech. “If this is a great film, it’s a miracle.”  He pointed out that while it’s easier than ever to make films today, he wants to see independent voices go out there and not make cookies in a factory. Earlier in the evening, he described making “Birdman” as “an irresponsible act,” he said. Cinema, he said, is all about decisions and details.
Women dominated this year’s DGA Awards, as honorees included Lesli Linka Glatter for Showtime’s “Homeland,” Lisa Cholodenko for HBO’s “Olive Kitteridge,” and three-week DGA member Jill Soloway for “Transparent” (Amazon Prime).  DGA nominee Jodie Foster presented Best Documentary Feature to Laura Poitras for Edward Snowden doc “Citizenfour.” “It’s an incredible time to be a documentary filmmaker,” said Poitras. “This film would not be possible without the real life courage of the people who let me film them.”
The winners of the 2014 DGA Awards for Outstanding Directorial Achievement are:
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN FEATURE FILM
 
 ALEJANDRO G. IÑÁRRITU
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
(Fox Searchlight Pictures)
 
Mr. Iñárritu’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: James W. Skotchdopole, Robert Graf
First Assistant Director: Peter Kohn
Second Assistant Directors: Amy Lauritsen, Tim Price
Second Second Assistant Director: Catherine Feeny
Assistant Unit Production Manager: Gabrielle Mahon
Location Manager: Joaquin Prange
 
This is Mr. Iñárritu’s second DGA Award. He was previously nominated in this category for Babel in 2006. He won the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials for “Best Job” (Proctor and Gamble) in 2012.
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN DRAMATIC SERIES
 
 
LESLI LINKA GLATTER
Homeland, “From A to B and Back Again”
(Showtime)
 
Ms. Glatter’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: Angela Phillips, Michael Klick
First Assistant Director: Nick Heckstall-Smith
Second Assistant Director: Wendy Bledsoe
 
This is Ms. Glatter’s second DGA Award. She previously won in this category in 2009 for Mad Men, “Guy Walks into an Advertising Agency.” She was also nominated in 2013 and 2012 for Homeland episodes “The Star” and “Q & A,” as well as in 1990 for Twin Peaks, “Episode 32006.”
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN COMEDY SERIES
 
 
JILL SOLOWAY
Transparent, “Best New Girl”
(Amazon Prime)
 
Ms. Soloway’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: Victor Hsu
First Assistant Director: Bill Purple
Second Assistant Director: Allan Monteiro Fortes
Second Second Assistant Director: Anna Vogt
 
This is Ms. Soloway’s first DGA Award.
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN MOVIES FOR TELEVISION AND MINI-SERIES
 
 
LISA CHOLODENKO
Olive Kitteridge
(HBO)
 
Ms. Cholodenko’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: David Coatsworth
First Assistant Director: Jesse Nye
Second Assistant Director: Mark Constance
Second Second Assistant Director: Elizabeth MacSwan
 
This is Ms. Cholodenko’s first DGA Award.
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN VARIETY/TALK/NEWS/SPORTS – SERIES
 
DAVE DIOMEDI
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, “Episode #1”
(NBC)
 
Mr. Diomedi’s Directorial Team:
Associate Directors: Maureen Smith, Mark Jankeloff
Stage Managers: Nicka Tolmasoff, Mike Kilkenny
 
This is Mr. Diomedi’s first DGA Award. He was also nominated in this category last year for Late Night Starring Jimmy Fallon, “#799.”
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN VARIETY/TALK/NEWS/SPORTS – SPECIALS
 
 
GLENN WEISS
The 68th Annual Tony Awards
(CBS)
 
Mr. Weiss’s Directorial Team:
Associate Directors: Ken Diego, Robin Abrams, Stefani Cohen, Ricky Kirshner
Stage Managers: Garry Hood, Phyllis Digilio-Kent, Peter Epstein, Andrew Feigin, Lynn Finkel, Doug Fogel, Jeffry Gitter, Arthur Lewis, Jeffrey M. Markowitz, Joey Meade, Seth Mellman, Cyndi Owgang, Jeff Pearl, Annette Powlis, Elise Reaves, Lauren Class Schneider
 
This is Mr. Weiss’s sixth DGA Award. He was also nominated this year for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Movies for Television and Mini-Series, together with Rob Ashford, for Peter Pan Live! He previously won the DGA Award in 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 for the 61st, 64th, 65th, 66th and 67th Annual Tony Awards. He was also nominated in 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006 and 2008 for the 55th, 56th, 59th, 60th, and 62nd Annual Tony Awards.
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN REALITY PROGRAMS
 
 
ANTHONY B. SACCO
The Chair, “The Test”
(Starz)
 
This is Mr. Sacco’s second DGA Award. He previously won in this category in 2006 for Treasure Hunters, “Episode #101” and was nominated in 2007 for Project Runway, “Fashion Giant #403.”
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN CHILDREN’S PROGRAMS
 
 
JONATHAN JUDGE
100 Things To Do Before High School, “Pilot”
(Nickelodeon)
 
Mr. Judge’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: Debra Spidell
First Assistant Director: Julian Petrillo
Second Assistant Director: Katey Wheelhouse
Second Second Assistant Director: Ceci Mak
 
This is Mr. Judge’s first DGA Award. He was previously nominated in this category in 2013 for Swindle and in 2012 for Camp Fred.
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN COMMERCIALS
 
 
NICOLAI FUGLSIG
(MJZ)
 
Sapeurs, Guinness ‑ AMV BBDO
First Assistant Director: Bob Wilkins
 
Waiting, FEMA ‑ Deutsch NY
First Assistant Director: Bob Wagner
Second Assistant Director: Rafa Sanz
 
This is Mr. Fuglsig’s second DGA Award. He previously won in this category in 2007 for Tipping Point (Guinness), It’s Magic (JC Penney), and Journey (Motorola).
 
 
 
OUTSTANDING DIRECTORIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN DOCUMENTARY
 
 
LAURA POITRAS
Citizenfour
 
RADiUS
Praxis Films
Participant Media
HBO Documentary Films
Bertha Foundation | BRITDOC Circle | Channel 4
Norddeutscher Rundfunk NDR
Bayerischer Rundfunk BR
Deutscher Filmförderfonds
This is Ms. Poitras’s first DGA Award.
 
 
 
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT & SERVICE AWARD RECIPIENTS
 
James Burrows and Robert Butler – Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Achievement in Television Direction:
James Burrows and Robert Butler were honored with the DGA’s first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Achievement in Television Direction, in honor of each director’s groundbreaking career.  The new award, created by the DGA’s National Board of Directors last year, joins the Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Achievement in Motion Picture Direction in being the two highest creative honors bestowed by the DGA.  The recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award in Television Direction are nominated by a blue ribbon committee of prominent television directors and approved by the present and past presidents of the Guild.
 
Phillip Goldfarb – Frank Capra Achievement Award:
Given to an Assistant Director or Unit Production Manager in recognition of career achievement in the industry and service to the Directors Guild of America.
 
Julie Gelfand – Franklin J. Schaffner Achievement Award:
Given to an Associate Director or Stage Manager in recognition of career achievement in the industry and service to the Directors Guild of America.
 
 

This Article is related to: Awards and tagged , , , ,