Predict the DGA winner

Posted by · 2:56 pm · January 28th, 2011

I nearly forgot tomorrow brings the DGA awards.  I thought they were next weekend.  Anyway, I guess this can be your place to offer up predictions.  I’ll say this, though.  I don’t think David Fincher has this in the bag.  At all.  Ballots were due in today, by the way, which means the Oscar nominations could have an impact.  Maybe last minute voters want to spring for Christopher Nolan after he was unceremoniously snubbed by the Academy?

Fincher’s dominance in the critics awards circuit is unmistakable.  But now you’re talking about 10,000 people rather than a 30-person media organization (and, in most cases, much smaller than that).  “Inception” is a populist film, but so, too, is “The King’s Speech.” And I think I’m just brazen enough to predict Tom Hooper to win.

Yep, I am.  I think Darren Aronofsky deserves it above all comers, but that’s unlikely.  And Fincher would be my second pick.  He could well win, and “The Fighter” could take the SAG ensemble prize, blowing the race wide open (for some).  But no, I’m going to put my chips on a sweep for “The King’s Speech” that started with PGA, will continue tomorrow night and keep going through Sunday with an ensemble win.  What about you?

[Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures]

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85 responses so far

  • 1 1-28-2011 at 7:15 pm

    Earl said...

    The winner of the DGA feature film award has gone on to win the Academy Award for best director all but six times since 1948.
    He might deserve it but how do they go for Nolan when he has no chance at the Oscar. To me Aranovsky has just as good a chance as Hooper and they both trail Fincher by a mile. I will scream if it is Hooper as I hate KS and its glorification of the most despicable family institution in the developed world and the toadies who hold it in esteem. The movie is a trivial story about a guy getting speech training. I mean really! I predict a series starting with The King’s Physiotherapy.

  • 2 1-28-2011 at 7:20 pm

    John said...

    Yeah, Fincher’s got this, but here’s hoping Nolan gets an Apollo 13. As in 1995, leaving the Best Director off of the nomination list is just inexcusable Academy.

    That, said, all five are great directors with movies that will be on their headstones, so no real problem if any one of them win.

    And TRUE GRIT is easily my favorite Coen Bros movie, so I have no pron with them showing up on the OScar list.

    But still, I really hope the DGA shows the Academy how to pick the actual Best Director of the year.

  • 3 1-28-2011 at 7:22 pm

    Drew said...

    What if King’s Speech sweeps everything at the oscars. No seriously, think about it. It just gets every fucking award it’s up for. There for breaking records and pissing off critics everywhere and pundits everywhere. Can you imagine? I’m just sayin, it might happen. If the academy really, really loves that movie, it could leave everything in the dust.

  • 4 1-28-2011 at 7:25 pm

    DylanS said...

    I can assure you Drew, Rush most definetly will not beat Bale. And it also has no chance at Cinematography or Sound Design.

  • 5 1-28-2011 at 7:31 pm

    Earl said...

    The Fighter has to get the SAG ensemble which is a poor predictor for Oscar BP or BD. It has 3 legitimate nominations for the Oscar and two should be winners and Wahlberg was likely close in a tough category. Bardem probably edged him out and that movie has not even started in my city. Helena Bonham-Carter’s nomination is a big joke.
    This is my hope. Fincher gets the DG and the Fighter gets the SAG and all this nonsense about KS will go away. We do not need another feel good forgettable like Chariots of Fire or Driving Miss Daisy or Dances with Wolves beating Goodfellas.

  • 6 1-28-2011 at 7:33 pm

    Plainview said...

    I say Fincher is a lock.

    Even if TKS really was the heavy favorite to win Best Picture (it isn’t), Fincher would still be a lock. Hooper is John Madden in 1998 , Rob Marshall in 2002 or Paul Haggis in 2005, a director in a frontrunner, but with no chance of winning whatsoever (yeah, BBM was the frontrunner in 2005, but you get my point).

    All of them had in common being unknown directors running against much bigger directors (though the favorite in 2002 seems Scorsese, not Polanski).

  • 7 1-28-2011 at 7:37 pm

    Earl said...

    The most painful Oscar will be KS beating Inception for best original screenplay. It’s going to happen I guess. This is like comparing a drawing done with stick people to a Da Vinci.

  • 8 1-28-2011 at 7:38 pm

    Chris138 said...

    Fincher’s gonna win but I’d be game for Nolan or Aronofsky taking the prize as well.

  • 9 1-28-2011 at 7:42 pm

    Drew said...

    I don’t know, they do like Rush, he’s been nominated quite a bit, as for cinematography, a few commentators pointed out that Grit isn’t Deakins best work, so who is the default? Prolly Speech. Sound work, Inception’s sole oscar may end up being visual effects, and Krsi himself said he spoke with a ound designer who said King’s Speech was his favorite of the year.

  • 10 1-28-2011 at 7:43 pm

    Earl said...

    The thing about Polanski beating Scorcese is that the Pianist was about a man overcoming a challenge (to survive) and triumphing at the end. Does that sound familiar.

  • 11 1-28-2011 at 7:51 pm

    Plainview said...

    #60- Well, it sounds like thousands of movies actually.

  • 12 1-28-2011 at 8:13 pm

    DylanS said...

    I still think Bale is probably the safeist pick of the night, minus mabye Firth. It would be foolish to expect anybody else to win, even if Rush is in the #2 spot, whatever that means at this point.

  • 13 1-28-2011 at 8:25 pm

    Earl said...

    Bale was amazing. It took me a while to even realize it was him.

  • 14 1-28-2011 at 8:27 pm

    Earl said...

    Colin Firth was terrific in a movie I hated. I wish James Franco was getting more of a look but I guess he will be owed down the road.

  • 15 1-28-2011 at 9:10 pm

    Ben M. said...

    Plainview, I don’t think any of the comparisons are apt, Shakespeare in Love and Crash were both surprise BP wins so a split makes sense, are Marshall was the favorite to win director on oscar night and Polanski’s win was a huge shock.

    Anyway, I’m going with Fincher at the DGA and academy, but I feel it is very close with Hooper at the DGA (leaving a slight chance for a Nolan shock given Spielberg and Howard won DGAs after oscar snubs) and wouldn’t be shocked if Hooper wins the oscar either.

  • 16 1-28-2011 at 9:15 pm

    Ben said...

    I could see Hooper winning this; but I do think within the DGA, Fincher has a lot of support from his breaking into the industry with music videos and commercials.

  • 17 1-28-2011 at 9:15 pm

    Speaking English said...

    ***The most painful Oscar will be KS beating Inception for best original screenplay. It’s going to happen I guess. This is like comparing a drawing done with stick people to a Da Vinci.***

    Wait wait wait. You’re comparing the script of “Inception” to a DA VINCI? LOL!!! This is ridiculous.

    The best in the category is “Another Year,” anyway.

  • 18 1-28-2011 at 9:38 pm

    Ben M. said...

    Yeah, to be honest I might even rank Inception’s script slightly below Avatar’s (a script which clearly has a number of bad lines of dialogue, but I think those lines somewhat unfairly overshadowed rich thematic concerns and solid story structure/character development) and that couldn’t even get a nom last year.

    Though I’m no fan of the King’s Speech script and probably would place that as the weakest in the category, I feel either Another Year or Kids Are All Right would be deserving winners.

  • 19 1-28-2011 at 10:13 pm

    Speaking English said...

    “The Fighter” is tops as well.

  • 20 1-29-2011 at 1:58 am

    M. Ward said...

    ***Wait wait wait. You’re comparing the script of “Inception” to a DA VINCI? LOL!!! This is ridiculous.***

    He’s not comparing the script of “Inception” to a DA VINCI. Don’t you know how analogies work? He’s saying compared to, in his opinion, KS’s crappy script, “Inception’s” script IS like a masterpiece.

  • 21 1-29-2011 at 5:11 am

    Maito said...

    Locke, uh, but if it’s a 10,000 member organization, you’d have to be the Warren Beatty of chit-chat to get a telling sample. I’d be overjoyed if Nolan did take it, though. I didn’t even dare dream.

    Not every film is “Black Swan” or “Inception,” but that doesn’t mean the theme isn’t well-delivered via visual storytelling or that quality performances aren’t drawn out by talented individuals.

    I’m definitely not exclusively an auteur-cheerleader, but while Hooper’s visual idiom was respectable, Fincher’s was impressive. Both got fine performances out of their cast, but Fincher was working with actors that were more untested, to say the least, in comparison, plus the “risks” he took (Timberlake, Reznor, CGI Winklevoss, whatever) paid off handsomely. No disrespect to Hooper, who must has a bright career ahead of him, but surely Fincher has earned _something_ (with Seven, Fight Club, Zodiac) that gives him the edge among voters. Maybe I’m seriously underestimating populist pull at DGA, eh who knows, but it’s also not like TKS is the only film with passionate fans.

    >>Drew: Grit isn’t Deakins best work

    Just like The Departed wasn’t Scorsese’s finest hour, almost irrelevant at their peerless level… but Deakin’s had memorable lensing of a smash hit that isn’t likely to win a whole lot during the night. Cinematography seems like the obvious spot to show a little love and if he’s not an outright lock, then definitely the front-runner, even if his overdue angle isn’t pimped to the max (as it should..) I think Deakins would be the single most deserving winner of the night out of every possible filmfolk who worked during the calender year.

  • 22 1-29-2011 at 6:20 am

    The Dude said...

    I have a feeling that the DGA is going to want to award a DIRECTOR rather than a FILM (unlike, say, the SAG ensemble award). Because of this, I can’t see Hooper winning, as he’s probably the least popular of the nominated directors. I’m sure he’ll get some votes based on the popularity of the film, but I think this one is going to Fincher, with Aronofsky as a potential spoiler.

  • 23 1-29-2011 at 6:38 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    It’s worth remembering that the DGA did pick Rob Marshall over Roman Polanski and Martin Scorsese eight years ago. If the film has enough momentum, the profile of the director isn’t crucial.

  • 24 1-29-2011 at 6:41 am

    Sam C. said...

    I don’t reckon NOlan has much of a chance; an Oscar snub could make potential voters go from supporting him to someone else.

    I’d say Hopper or Fincher take this. Russell and Aronofsky I’m doubtful of.

    In the end…going with Fincher

  • 25 1-29-2011 at 7:38 am

    Dominik said...

    If we want some heat and suspense left in the race, we better cross our fingers for Fincher to win. If Hooper takes it, I can´t see “TKS” losing at the Oscars. The most likely scenario, though, is Fincher taking DGA and Oscar – and “TSN” and “TKS” have a hell of a fight for “Best Picture”.

    And I do think that Annette Bening is possibly beating Natalie Portman. I´m a huge Portman fan, but I have to admit (after a second viewing of “Black Swan”) that her acting at times felt a bit “too much”, since there´s a over-dosis of shock and paranoia in that movie.

  • 26 1-29-2011 at 8:30 am

    /3rtfu11 said...

    “The most painful Oscar will be KS beating Inception for best original screenplay. It’s going to happen I guess. This is like comparing a drawing done with stick people to a Da Vinci.”

    I believe this category will have TKAAR upset.–A gay themed Focus Feature “feature” – as won in both screenwriting categories of recent.

  • 27 1-29-2011 at 8:31 am

    Daveylow said...

    I just listened to Hooper being interviewed on Tavis Smiley and it turns out TKS is a very personal project for him since he is British-Australian. He’s also extremely articulate about what he was doing in each scene. This man is far from some hack, passionless director.

  • 28 1-29-2011 at 12:47 pm

    Samuel said...

    I’m a big fan of inception, liked it better than Kings Speech, but I don’t think it’s screenplay is a whole lot better. It’s an hour and a half of exposition and a 45 minute climax. Granted, the climax is brilliant and the exposition is entertaining but I’m not so hot on the screenplay overall. The big issue is that the motivations and goals of the characters, with the exception of Cobb,are murky at best, non-existent at worst. No one but Cobb has any character arc to speak of. In Speech every single one of the characters has a clear motivation and goal and undergoes some kind of change. Speech may not be a better film, but it’s a better screenplay.

  • 29 1-29-2011 at 1:10 pm

    Samuel said...

    Of course, you could argue that the supporting characters in Inception are shallow because they’re a part of Cobb’s dream. But that’s just being clever.

    Anyway, my point isn’t that Inception is a bad screenplay, far from it. It’s that The King’s Speech is a good screenplay, a very good one.

  • 30 1-29-2011 at 1:28 pm

    Paul Outlaw said...

    My prediction: Fincher
    Dark horse: NOLAN

    My preference (this year):
    1. Russell
    2. Nolan
    3. Aronofsky
    4. Fincher (oddly, my favorite director of the five)
    5. Hooper

  • 31 1-29-2011 at 1:52 pm

    Patryk said...

    Will win: Fincher
    Could win: Hooper
    Should win: Aronofsky
    Should have been nominated: Coen/Coen

  • 32 1-29-2011 at 2:44 pm

    Derek 8-Track said...

    “I also think people are being entirely unfair to The King’s Speech, which is anything but anonymous. It IS a director’s achievement. Let’s not be disrespectful and start acting like these damn things direct themselves.”

    Thank you!

  • 33 1-29-2011 at 4:49 pm

    Damon Larkins said...

    Ok once again, I’ve got to solve this dilemma. The Kings Speech won the PGA, ok that’s it! The film is great, but it has no chance against TSN director David Fincher. When Fincher lost with his supposed masterpiece “button”, it made sense, it was highly overrated and it was the year of the dog. Just like Slumdog Millionaire, which won Boyle his first Oscar, the same will happen with Fincher. Weinstein has no power in the DGA, this is a Directors award by a board of the most critical academy members of directing. Nolan not getting nominated for Best Director at the Oscars, is not going to get him a sympathy win, so don’t assume something that silly. Arronofsky has directed Black Swan with some of the stylish, abstract, and beautiful camera work, but sadly he won’t win. That film has hardly any buzz, except for Portman. David O Russel would be an upset, but he can’t beat out Fincher, or Arronofsky, and Nolan, no way. Fincher will come out on top, because that gas been darn near unanimous since the awards season began. You can hop on the King to lead you the throne, but he’s getting overthrown by a bunch of computer nerds come Oscar night!

  • 34 1-29-2011 at 9:33 pm

    len said...

    I think anyone who is a director cannot ignore what christopher nolan did with inception — which is why i find it puzzling why he is not winning more awards or is the front runner.

    I say it’s david fincher, but hope it’s Nolan. They may love the kings speech but i think they will go with someone who has been nominated before.

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