An unpredictable Oscar race just became more unpredictable. Tonight, the 68th Annual DGA Awards gave its top prize to Alejandro Iñárritu for The Revenant, making it the first time in the org’s history to award a helmer with back-to-back wins in that category. Last year, Inarritu won for Birdman and went on to win three Oscars for best picture, original screenplay and director.
Tonight’s win for The Revenant, puts the film back in the Oscar game after losing out the Producers Guild’s top award to The Big Short and being overlooked by the Screen Actors Guild with a cast ensemble nomination. Last Sunday, SAG awarded that trophy to the Spotlight cast.
While the DGAs did recognize a number of women and minorities in their nominations, Inarritu and Dee Rees, who won in the TV movie/miniseries category for her HBO film Bessie, were the only two minorities who won tonight. Unlike the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which was all about diversity, the topic hardly came up during the ceremony at the Hyatt Century Ballroom. But, in the press room, Iñárritu wasn’t shy about addressing the elephant in the room.
In regards to Revenant, the director explained “The story of Hugh Glass as the father of a mixed-race kid is something I wanted to explore, how you grow up as an outside face.”
And as far as Oscar’s inclusion debate this season: “It’s a cultural problem, not the problem of the Academy.” But Iñárritu has hope: “This country was impregnated by so many different races and the power of it relies on that.”
Among the top wins in TV directing, Veep’s Chris Addison won in the comedy series slot for his episode “Election Night”, while in dramatic series, Game of Thrones David Nutter won for his episode “Mother’s Mercy”. Here’s how it all went down: