As the Awards Season continues on its merry way, we need to thank the Directors Guild for scheduling their ceremony on a Saturday night instead of piling up on Sunday like everyone else. (I'm looking at you, Screen Actors Guild, with your ceremony later tonight.)
But, meanwhile, last night...
The Directors Guild honored directors in ten categories, with additional Special Awards given to Ed Sherin (DGA Honorary Life Member Award), Katy E. Garretson (Frank Capra Achievement Award) and Dennis W. Mazzocco (Franklin J. Schaffner Achievement Award).
The competitive categories include commercials, children's programs and reality programs, but let's get serious. The one everybody wants to know about is Feature Film. The DGA awards are a better predictor of the ultimate Oscar winner than just about any other award. It doesn't always hold that the winner of the DGA award also wins the Directing Oscar, but it almost always does. And this year... No surprise, Michael Hazanavicius, director of "The Artist," was the big winner, taking home the award for Best Director of a Feature Film. Hazanavicius may want to start clearing a space on his mantel and penning his acceptance speech.
In the other film category -- Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary -- James Marsh won for "Project Nim," which was not nominated by the Academy in their documentary group. "Project Nim" is about a chimpanzee raised by humans to behave and communicate as much like a human child as possible, which means it is so up my alley. I'm going to have to find this one on a screen somewhere.
In the TV Movie or Mini-Series category, Jon Cassar won for "The Kennedys," which appeared on the Reelz Channel, with Patty Jenkins named the winner for a TV Dramatic Series for the pilot episode of "The Killing" on AMC and Robert B. Weide the winner for a TV Comedy Series for the "Palestinian Chicken" episode of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" on HBO. Glenn Weiss won in the TV Musical Variety category for last year's Tony Awards show on CBS.
Among reality TV shows, Neil P. DeGroot was honored for his direction of an episode of "The Biggest Loser" on NBC, while Amy Schatz took honors for her work on "A Child's Garden of Verse" on HBO in the Children's Programs category.
The award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials went to Noam Murro of Biscuit Filmworks, who directed ads for Heineken Premium Light, DirecTV, Volkswagen Tiguan and EA Battlefield 3 that you may've seen on TV. This Handlebar Mustache ad definitely looks familiar.
The only one that I've left out is the Daytime Serial award, which went to director William Ludel for an episode of "General Hospital" wherein daytime icon Luke Spencer was subjected to an intervention by family and friends. It was an okay episode, but I kind of hate "General Hospital" in general, with special distaste for what they've done to Luke and Laura and their kids. Decimated might be a good word. Meanwhile, ABC canceled "One Life to Live," a much better show with much better writing, performances and direction. And better ratings, as well. But the DGA couldn't even see fit to give their award to OLTL in its last season. No, they lauded GH just like they always do. Thanks a bunch, DGA. I'm sure none of that is Mr. Ludel's fault. He's probably a lovely person and no doubt a talented director who richly deserves his award. Yeah, whatever. I'm still bitter about that whole "One Life to Live" thing. I believe at this point, there are a total of four Daytime Serials left. Perhaps now would be a good time for the DGA to excise that category completely.