Directors Guild Awards nominations: ‘American Sniper,’ ‘Boyhood,’ ‘Birdman,’ ‘Grand Budapest,’ ‘Imitation Game’

On Tuesday, the Directors Guild of America nominated Wes Anderson (“The Grand Budapest Hotel“),  Clint Eastwood (“American Sniper“), Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (“Birdman“), Richard Linklater (“Boyhood“) and Morten Tyldum (“The Imitation Game“). The winner will be revealed at the 67th annual edition of this kudofest on Feb. 7 at the Hyatt Regency in Los Angeles. 

We are predicting that Linklater will win the Best Director Oscar. We have Inarritu in second place in that race and Anderson in fourth. Tyldum sits in seventh on our Oscar chart while Eastwood is down in the 13th slot. At the DGA, they bounced third-ranked Ava DuVernay (“Selma“) and fifth-place Oscar contender David Fincher (“Gone Girl“).

Other notable names missing include: sixth-ranked Damien ChazelleWhiplash“), seventh-place Angelina Jolie (“Unbroken“) and Bennett Miller (“Foxcatcher“), who rounds out the top eight.

See latest Oscar rankings when the Experts’ predictions are combined

Since the Directors Guild of America aligned itself with the Oscars calendar in 1950, all but seven of its winners for Best Director have repeated at the Oscars. However, the guild does less well predicting the five Oscar nominees. In its first 15 years, there were anywhere from four to 18 DGA nominees. From 1963 – 1965, it went with five before going to 10 for the rest of the decade. Finally, beginning in 1970 it enshrined the number of nominees as five. And since then, there have only been five years where it previewed the exact lineup of Oscar contenders. 

Tthere are usually one or two differences between the slate selected by the 14,500 members of the DGA, which includes helmers of TV fares and commercials, and the choices of the 382 members of the directors branch of the academy.

Last year, Alfonso Cuaron (“Gravity“) edged out Paul Greengrass (“Captain Phillips“), Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave“), David O. Russell (“American Hustle“), Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wall Street“) to win this award. He repeated at the Oscars over McQueen, Russell, Scorsese and Alexander Payne (“Nebraska”). 

In 2012, only two of the Directors Guild of America nominees —  Ang Lee (“Life of Pi”) and Steven Spielberg (“Lincoln”) — also reaped Oscar bids. The other three DGA nominees — Ben Affleck (“Argo”), Kathryn Bigelow (“Zero Dark Thirty”) and Tom Hooper (“Les Miserables”) — were snubbed by the Oscars in favor of Michael Haneke (“Amour”), David O. Russell (“Silver Linings Playbook”) and Benh Zeitlin (“Beasts of the Southern Wild).  Lee won the Oscar race. 

That disconnect between the DGA and Oscars was unprecedented.

Will DGA preview Oscar lineup for Best Director?

Affleck won over the DGA voters while his film, “Argo,” became the third to take Best Picture at the Oscars without a corresponding Best Director nomination. The others: “Grand Hotel” (1931/32) and “Driving Miss Daisy” (1989).

Affleck was the seventh DGA champ who did not go on to repeat at the Academy Awards, following in the path of these Oscar also-rans:

1968: DGA to Anthony Harvey (“The Lion in Winter”), Oscar to Carol Reed (“Oliver!”)

1972: DGA to Francis Ford Coppola (“The Godfather”), Oscar to Bob Fosse (“Cabaret”)

1985: DGA to Steven Spielberg (“The Color Purple”), Oscar to Sydney Pollack (“Out of Africa”)

1995: DGA to Ron Howard (“Apollo 13”), Oscar to Mel Gibson (“Braveheart”)

2000: DGA to Ang Lee (“Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”), Oscar to Steven Soderbergh (“Traffic”)

2002: DGA to Rob Marshall (“Chicago”), Oscar to Roman Polanski (“The Pianist”)

UPDATED: Experts’ Oscars predictions in 24 categories

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