Where the Golden Globes and BAFTA Awards have failed, the Oscars have succeeded. Greta Gerwig and Jordan Peele have both been nominated for Best Director at the 90th Academy Awards. The two will face off against Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk”), Paul Thomas Anderson (“Phantom Thread”), and Guillermo del Toro (“The Shape of Water”). The latter has won the award at the Golden Globes and Critics Choice Awards this year.
Gerwig’s nomination makes her only the fifth woman to be nominated for Best Director in the Academy Awards’ 90-year history, following Lina Wertmüller (“Seven Beauties”), Jane Campion (“The Piano”), Sofia Coppla (“Lost in Translation”), and Kathryn Bigelow (“The Hurt Locker”). Bigelow remains the sole female winner in the category as of now.
Peele, meanwhile, joins John Singleton (“Boyz n the Hood”), Lee Daniels (“Precious”), Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”), and Barry Jenkins (“Moonlight”) as the fifth black director to compete for the Oscar. No black director has ever won the Best Director Oscar.
Although Peele and Gerwig were shut out of the Golden Globe and BAFTA races, both filmmakers did earn Best Director nominations from the Directors Guild of America. Peele is also DGA-nominated for Best First-Time Feature Film.
Guillermo del Toro (“The Shape of Water”), Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk”), and Paul Thomas Anderson (“Phantom Thread”) were also nominated for Best Director.