'Birdman' wins PGA Award, next stop Oscar?

Posted by · 9:22 pm · January 24th, 2015

Ever since “The Hurt Locker” triumphed over “Avatar” at the 2010 Producers Guild Awards, it has been rather obvious to me that this precursor announcement is the skeleton key to understanding how the Oscar vote will likely play out. Why? Because – as we've noted a number of times – the PGA is the only group that shares the preferential ballot system the Academy employs. So what won this year? “Birdman” won, that's what. And for those who were chalking this up as a boring, telegraphed Oscar season…


So, what does this mean for the rest of the season? It means, clearly, “Birdman” could well be poised to take the Best Picture Oscar next month. I, for one, thought “The Imitation Game” would be the one to unseat “Boyhood” this evening and assert itself as the industry favorite. I even thought “American Sniper” had an outside shot. I wasn't looking at “Birdman,” though, and personally, I'm elated. As far as observing a season goes, I'm a touch confused.

But maybe I shouldn't be. Is it just preordained because of how the preferential ballot will play itself out from here? Or will this be the year that breaks the PGA's streak? “Birdman” is already strong going into tomorrow's Screen Actors Guild Awards, and should it take the ensemble prize there (odds on favorite), watch out!

For now, let's reset. I imagine Monday's Oscar column will not want for material. Other bits and bobs from tonight's awards include “Breaking Bad” winning, I believe, the last award the series is eligible for and Oscar snubees “Life Itself” and “The LEGO Movie” winning in their respective categories. But “Birdman,” y'all. Wow.

Check out the PGA nominees here, the full list of winners below and the rest of the season's offerings at The Circuit.


Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures
“Birdman” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, James W. Skotchdopole

Outstanding Producer of Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures
“The LEGO Movie” (Warner Bros. Pictures)
Producer: Dan Lin

Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures
“Life Itself” (Magnolia Pictures)
Producers: Garrett Basch, Steve James, Zak Piper

TV winners and more on the next page…


Outstanding Producer of Long-Form Television
“Fargo” (FX)
Producers: Adam Bernstein, John Cameron, Ethan Coen, Joel Coen, Michael Frislev, Noah Hawley, Warren Littlefield, Chad Oakes, Kim Todd

Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama
“Breaking Bad” (AMC)
Producers: Melissa Bernstein, Sam Catlin, Bryan Cranston, Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould, Mark Johnson, Stewart Lyons, Michelle MacLaren, George Mastras, Diane Mercer, Thomas Schnauz, Moira Walley-Beckett

Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Comedy
“Orange Is The New Black” (Netflix)
Producers: Mark A. Burley, Sara Hess, Jenji Kohan, Gary Lennon, Neri Tannenbaum, Michael Trim, Lisa I. Vinnecour

Outstanding Producer of Non-Fiction Television
“COSMOS: A SpaceTime Odyssey” (FOX/NatGeo)
Producers: Brannon Braga, Mitchell Cannold, Jason Clark, Ann Druyan, Livia Hanich, Steve Holtzman, Seth MacFarlane

Outstanding Producer of Competition Television
“The Voice” (NBC)
Producers: Stijn Bakkers, Mark Burnett, John De Mol, Chad Hines, Lee Metzger, Audrey Morrissey, Jim Roush, Kyra Thompson, Mike Yurchuk, Amanda Zucker

Outstanding Producer of Live Entertainment & Talk Television
“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” (NBC)
Producers: Rob Crabbe, Jamie Granet Bederman, Katie Hockmeyer, Jim Juvonen, Josh Lieb, Brian McDonald, Lorne Michaels, Gavin Purcell

Outstanding Sports Program
“Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel” (HBO)

Outstanding Children”s Program
“Sesame Street” (PBS)

Outstanding Digital Series
“Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee” (http://www.crackle.com/c/comedians-in-cars-getting-coffee)

Stanley Kramer Award
“The Normal Heart”

Milestone Award
Jon Feltheimer

Norman Lear Achievement in Television Award
Mark Gordon

David O. Selznick Award
Gale Anne Hurd

Visionary Award
Plan B Entertainment (Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner)

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