Chloé Zhao Becomes Second Woman to Win Top Directors Guild Award


The Directors Guild of America made history on Saturday night and awarded the group’s main award for feature film directing to Chloé Zhao (“Nomadland”), the first woman of color to receive the award and only the second woman to ever win the category . after Kathryn Bigelow (“The Hurt Locker”).

Zhao was considered a favorite after a dominant award run for her film, which also won top awards at the Golden Globes, Critics Choice Awards, and Producers Guild Awards. Since then, she has stepped into Oscar night as the unaffordable front runner, the DGA winner has won Best Director Oscar 13 out of the last 15 times.

A best picture victory for “Nomadland” also seems increasingly likely: only a few films have won the main Oscar without having previously won the DGA or PGA. Still, one of those curveballs didn’t come up until last year when “Parasite” won the best picture without one of those trophies but after scooping a high profile win at the Screen Actors Guild.

This could be a way forward for The Trial of the Chicago 7, which also took a SAG win last week. Although the film’s director, Aaron Sorkin, was nominated for the DGA Award along with Zhao, it was turned down for a directorial nomination at the Oscars.

In her acceptance speech, Zhao Sorkin praised: “I can feel my heart beating with yours when I watch your film,” she said, as well as for the other nominees, Lee Isaac Chung (“Minari”), Emerald Fennell (“Very Promising young woman “) and David Fincher (” Mank “).

And while he didn’t win, Fincher may have hit the line of the night when asked to sum up his career: “Directing,” Fincher said, “is a bit like trying to paint a watercolor through one from four blocks away . ” Telescope, walkie-talkie, and 85 people hold the brush. “

In other news of the virtual ceremony, the award for first-time directing a feature film went to Darius Marder for “Sound of Metal,” while the documentary award went to Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw for “The Truffle Hunters,” which was rejected by Oscar.

Here is the full list of winners:

Feature: Chloé Zhao, “Nomadland”

First function: Darius Marder, “Sound of Metal”

Documentary: Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw, “The Truffle Hunters”

TV films and limited series: Scott Frank, “The Queen’s Gambit”

Dramatic series: Lesli Linka Glatter, “Homeland”

Comedy series: Susanna Fogel, “The flight attendant”

Variety / conversation / news / sport (regularly planned): Don Roy King, “Saturday Night Live”

Variety / discussion / news / sport (specials): Thomas Schlamme, “A west wing special that we can all benefit from if we vote”

Reality programs: Joseph Guidry, “Full Bloom”

Advertising: Melina Matsoukas, “You love me” for beats by Dr. Dre

Children’s programs: Amy Schatz, “We Are The Dream: The Children of the MLK Oratorical Fest in Oakland”



Robert Dunfee