Tonight, the final major guild, The Directors Guild of America, announced their awards for 2014, giving their top prize to Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu for his brilliant direction of Birdman. This means that the film has won the “Triple Crown” (PGA, DGA, and SAG), making it an unstoppable force as we head into the Oscars.
No film since Apollo 13 has won all three of these awards and lost the Best Picture Oscar, but that film had failed to get a Best Director nod, showing that it wasn’t quite as strong with the Academy. Birdman, on the other hand, has nominations in every major category except Film Editing (which is probably due to the Editors’ Branch thinking that there wasn’t much editing there), so its path to the Oscars should be pretty smooth.
This completes what we could rightly call the “King’s Speech Coup,” named after the film that, four years ago, had a sudden surge of victories with the PGA and DGA (in addition to SAG, which was fully expected), after the critics had given almost all of their Best Picture awards to The Social Network. As a result, The King’s Speech went on to claim four Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor. This year, after the critics gave the vast majority of their Best Picture awards to Boyhood, the guilds have once again gone their own way (and, in this critic’s humble opinion, have chosen the better film once more).
With Birdman‘s victories in all three top guilds, we can now expect it to take Best Picture (the PGA winner has claimed it for the last seven years in a row), Best Director (the DGA winner claims it around 90% of the time), and a few other awards. At this point, the only award that still seems a little up in the air is Best Actor. Will the Academy go along with SAG’s choice of Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything, or will they acknowledge Michael Keaton’s brilliant performance in Birdman, which has been earning him rave reviews and a multitude of awards throughout the season? We’ll just have to wait for the Oscar ceremony on February 22nd to find out.
Be sure to join us again tomorrow when we bring you the winners of this year’s BAFTA awards (the British Academy Awards), where we’ll see if they agree with the guilds, the critics, or go entirely their own way.
In the meantime, please see below for a complete list of tonight’s winners:
Feature Film: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Birdman
Documentary: Laura Poitras, Citizenfour
Dramatic Series: Leslie Linka Glatter, Homeland
Comedy Series: Jill Solloway, Transparent
Movies for Television and Miniseries: Lisa Cholodenko, Olive Kitteridge
Variety/Talk/News/Sports – Regularly Scheduled Programming: David Diomedi, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
Variety/Talk/News/Sports – Specials: Glenn Weiss, The 68th Annual Tony Awards
Reality Programs: Anthony B. Sacco, The Chair
Children’s Programs: Jonathan Judge, 100 Things to Do Before High School
Commercials: Nicolai Fuglsig, Sapeurs, Guinness and Waiting, FEMA