Ben Affleck wins the DGA


Ben Affleck has just become the third director in DGA/Academy history to win the DGA without a corresponding Oscar nomination.

Best Feature: Ben Affleck, Argo
Best Documentary Feature: Malik Bendjelloul, Searching for Sugarman

Televison Directors award winners, after the cut.

Best TV Miniseries: Jay Roach, Game Change
Best Drama Series: Rian Johnson, Breaking Bad
Best Comedy Series: Lena Dunham, Girls
Best Reality Series: Brian Smith, Master Chef

DGA Breakfast

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Life of Pi and Brave top VES Awards


  1. Bryce Forestieri
    February 2, 2013

    Spielberg yo!

  2. PaulH
    February 2, 2013

    Well. At least they’re batting .500. Another win for the self-absorbed, talentless tattooed one. I’d rather see another Modern Family win that for one more award to go to Dunham.

  3. Bette
    February 2, 2013

    Searching for Sugar Man is outstanding, truly inspiring, and deserving of everything it wins. I would love to see the impossible, a tie at the Oscars between Sugar and The Invisible War. The latter is a harrowing gut punch, and tells a very important story. Both these documentaries deserve huge audiences.

    I can’t help myself, but have to add the Academy’s history in awarding the Best Documentary prize is an unfunny joke. They virtually never even nominate the finest, though this year is a happy exception.

  4. Elton
    February 2, 2013

    I’m crazy about Dunham winning. Such a fan of her work in “Girls”.

  5. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    Is Dunham the first female to win ANY major directing award for television? I can’t recall any female TV director winning a DGA or an Emmy.

    Sasha, do you know?

  6. Mitchell, Oscar Buzzer
    February 2, 2013

    I’m super delighted that Lena Dunham has won the award.

  7. February 2, 2013

    I also quite like SEARCH FOR SUGARMAN, and understand it’s selection here, but the two documentaries I would rate highest for this past year are:

    Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of the Lord


    The Central Park Five

    Both received fine coverage here at AD over the past weeks in separate posts as I recall.

  8. February 2, 2013

    What time wiil Affleck win his award?

  9. PaulH
    February 2, 2013

    About 10:30 Pacific (1:30AM eastern). Life of Pi is turning into this years True Grit (an 0-fer), isn’t it?

  10. PaulH
    February 2, 2013

    Dunham is just like every boy band of the last 20 years; a fad, a flavor of the month, and little else. She’s got good PR people behind her. How else to account for her success? Her 15 minutes are ticking away and she’ll be relegated to the dustbin of TV history soon enough.

  11. Max
    February 2, 2013

    @Paul H
    Not Really. Life of Pi is currently the frontrunner to win Best Visual Effects, Cinematography and Score. It could win Best Production Design and one of the Sounds as well, maybe even Director.

  12. marlonbrando020
    February 2, 2013

    “Is Dunham the first female to win ANY major directing award for television? I can’t recall any female TV director winning a DGA or an Emmy.”

    Betty Thomas won an Emmy in 1993 for Directing an episode of the TV comedy “Dream On” and later won a DGA award for the TV Movie “The Late Show” (1996)

    Beth McCarthy-Miller has won 2 DGA awards: Music/Variety in 2001 for “SNL” and in 2002 for “America: A Tribute to Heroes.”

    Lesli Linka Glatter won a DGA in 2007 for directing an episode of “Mad Men”

    Patty Jenkins won a DGA in 2012 for directing the pilot to TV Drama Series “The Killing”

    There’s probably more, but this is what I can think of at the moment…

  13. 3.14
    February 2, 2013

    Life of Pi will win maximum academy awards (at least 5) ..Haters and lincoln fanboys will get one tight slap

  14. The Dude
    February 2, 2013

    Well, at least it isn’t Modern Family again…

  15. Someone
    February 2, 2013

    Hey if Life of Pi really ends up winning all that, a Best Picture win might be within reach! I mean no one actually hates the film – no backlash, no takedown …
    Maybe it’ll pull off one of the biggest surprise in Oscar History(“And the best motion picture of the year goes to… …Life of Pi!” just imagine the shock). The Academy showed it really loved the film by showering it with 11 nominations. Who’s to say they don’t go all the way with it?

  16. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    Life of Pi won’t go the way of True Grit because it’s guaranteed to win at least two Oscars (Cinematography and Visual Effects), it’s the frontrunner for two more (Sound and Sound Editing) and it’s in the running for Production Design and Score. That’s anywhere from 2 to 6 Oscars.

  17. 3.14
    February 2, 2013

    When will they announce Ang Lee as Best Director?

  18. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    @Someone: if Life of Pi DOES end up winning Best Picture, that last envelope won’t be a shock because it will also win Best Director and that will tip us off early on. No film since Rebecca (1940) has won Best Picture without claiming at least one other top prize (Directing/Screenplay/Acting). Since Pi has no Acting nominations and is certainly not winning the competitive Adapted Screenplay Oscar, it will have to win Best Director if it’s going all the way.

  19. BlueFox94
    February 2, 2013

    “LIFE OF PI” should surrender Best Cinematography to “SKYFALL”.

  20. 3.14
    February 2, 2013

    Whoever takes best adapted screenplay takes home Best film at oscars

  21. PaulH
    February 2, 2013

    Someone, I’m sure that’s what the True Gritters were saying right until the end of the ceremony. Any film like Pi whose plot is unfollowable and harder to solve than a Rubik’s cube is auto-DQd from BP consideration. With Cinematography, the marching orders are to finally give it to Deakins for what some suggested as a movie that copied the photography style of the Dark Knight. VFX is The Avengers’ to lose, because they have a hell of a lot more than a tiger in their arsenal. Lincoln or Skyfall should win score, Les Mis could surprise and win production design (My Oscar NGNG), but likely Lincoln there, too. Sound is anybody’s guess, and they really should combine them into one award.

  22. Bryce Forestieri
    February 2, 2013

    Why isn’t there a write-in campaign for Mihai Malăimare Jr.? That is the real fucking travesty this year.

    Or maybe a campaign to unnominate Alan Arkin?

  23. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    Thanks for that info/reply marlonbrando020! Do you know if the DGA has awarded any female TV directors?

  24. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    PS: Ignore that last post marlonbrando020. I just realized you listed DGA winners as well. Thanks!

  25. 3.14
    February 2, 2013

    @PaulH How old are you? 5 yrs?

  26. Bryce Forestieri
    February 2, 2013

    “Any film like Pi whose plot is unfollowable and harder to solve than a Rubik’s cube”

    This merits the R-word!!

    But rest assured I wont :P

  27. Max
    February 2, 2013

    By your theory, Argo cannot win unless it takes Adapted Screenplay from the far more deserving Kushner(would the Academy resist adding a Pulitzer-Prize Winner to its list of winners? I think not). Or if Arkin wins(which would be the biggest travesty in recent years). It seems the only place Argo can win is in Editing. Score? Desplat has had a great year but his work in Argo was nothing special and did not deserve to be nominated over Cloud Atlas and Beast of The Southern Wild’s FAR superior scores. Sound Editing/Mixing? Even less likely, with showier films in the play(Les Miserables, Skyfall, Life of Pi). That is why I’m sticking to Lincoln for the moment, and will continue to do so even if Affleck wins the DGA. If Argo takes the WGA as well, then the I’ll have no choice but to jump ship. Until then: Lincoln all the way!

  28. Casey
    February 2, 2013


  29. JJ
    February 2, 2013

    I hope Lee wins! He’s so versatile and visionary.

    Affleck winning would be weird. Argo isn’t breaking any new ground. It’s workmanlike.

  30. Bryce Forestieri
    February 2, 2013

    Imagine THE COUNSELOR is a critical hit later this year and then they finally give Cormac the Nobel. Will he still give a shit about Oscar? Was he there at the ceremony when NO COUNTRY won?

  31. Reno
    February 2, 2013

    5 Broken Cameras is fantastic. Watch it on Netflix. It’s actually a 2011 film and it’ll make my top 10 for that year. I wonder what it’s chances are at the Oscars. Searching for Sugar Man seems to be the fave now that it’s director won DGA.

  32. The J Viewer
    February 2, 2013

    Thanks for updating so far, Ryan.

    (DGA in progress*)
    “Best Feature Documentary*: Malik Bendjelloul, Searching for Sugarman
    Best TV Series, Comedy*: Lena Dunham, Girls”

    I am a bit disappointed that War or Wei-Wei didn’t+ win especially given the subject matter both features are dealing with. . . . But c’est la vie. (+I imagine the win means larger audience, thus helping enhance public awareness.)

  33. Yogsss
    February 2, 2013

    @Bryce: Yes, he was there sitting close to the Coens and the No Country team.

  34. February 2, 2013

    Peppermint Gummy Bear,
    Here’s what you’re doing wrong:
    You can be LaQuifa Wadley but stop being a jerk.

  35. Zach
    February 2, 2013

    Does Game Change ever lose? As if it’s Roots or Angels of America. But we knew it would win.

  36. February 2, 2013

    Best TV Miniseries: Jay Roach, Game Change

    (I forgot to click the update button because wine).

  37. Anthony
    February 2, 2013

    LOL @Ryan

    “Peppermint Gummy Bear,
    Here’s what you’re doing wrong:
    You can be LaQuifa Wadley but stop being a jerk.”

    Sounds like a “conversation” I had with a man on a bus once…

  38. February 2, 2013

    “Yours are some of finest films in recent memory… There have been moments when I wish it was a slightly less incredible year for movies.”
    - Steven Spielberg

  39. Zach
    February 2, 2013

    Ugh, I was hopeful for a second there that that was Steven’s acceptance speech for the win.

  40. February 2, 2013

    Game Change, good work.

  41. Peppermint Gummy Bear
    February 2, 2013

    Ryan, I only pointing out that he tries to hard to come off as gay. He makes comments like: I wanna taste her lips, or fuck her, or thats my good looking wife.

    I as a gay man, know many that talk about how much poon they get, but the problem is that they are deep deep in the closet. I know that kind of person. And Im sure you are too.


    As a gay man, I admire you loods. You have excellent taste in film and television. This is your career and you love it. We love you and Sasha for keeping this totally cool website going. This website is my one escape from workplace. Fuck facebook.

  42. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    @Max, that’s why I remain skeptical about an Argo victory at the Oscars. Unless it’s about to do something that hasn’t occurred since 1940, then we have to assume that Argo MUST win Adapted Screenplay or Supporting Actor en route to Best Picture. Of course, Arkin is NOT winning so that means it pretty much has to win Adapted Screenplay, which it definitely can. If it wins that award early, then you know it’s going all the way for a Crash-like haul (Picture/Screenplay/Editing). If it loses Adapted Screenplay, then you know it’s likely not winning Best Picture.

  43. The J Viewer
    February 2, 2013

    [Second comment]

    (DGA in progress*)
    “Best TV Miniseries*: Jay Roach, Game Change”

    Here’s your sigh: I should have known better, When in doubt, click (predict) HBO haa……. (I predicted, incorrectly, the win to go to [AHS: Asylum] Dark Cousin.)

  44. Peppermint Gummy Bear
    February 2, 2013

    One of these directors is not like the others, which one?
    All 5 have Oscars
    All 5 have films that may lose best picture to Harvey Weinstein
    4 have won best director
    4 are caucasian
    4 are men
    2 have won best director and best picture Oscars
    2 have made history by winning their director Oscar
    2 have won best director while an inferior film went to win “best” picture
    2 were nominated for best director this year
    3 have been shafted by the Academy (2 this year and 1 before)
    3 have won best director Oscars for films centered during war
    1 has beat James Cameron
    1 looks like James Cameron
    1 was married to James Cameron
    1 is a woman
    1 is asian
    1 has won 2 directing Oscars for films set during WW2
    1 has won adapted screenplay Oscar
    1 has won multiple Razzies
    1 has acted in something Harvey shoved down the throat of Academy members
    1 has beaten David Fincher
    1 directed a film that beat the far superior Social Network
    1 dated J.Lo
    1 is wearing glasses
    5 have directed a film whose actors went on to get an acting nomination
    4 have actors nominated for the film they directed this year
    4 are over 60
    3 have serious contenders in the acting category this year
    3 have won Oscars in the past decade
    2 directed actors who are almost guaranteed to win this year
    2 directed films that were early favorites but later tainted by controversy
    1 directed a film that swept the critics awards, won GG for drama, PGA, DGA, WGA, and BAFTA but was stopped from winning best picture by homophobes
    1 directed a film that was an early favorite but later totally ignored thanks to idiots that stated the film promoted torture
    1 has directed an actor to a lead actor win
    1 is a billionaire
    1 is being investigated by congress
    1 may run for US senate
    1 has directed some of the most iconic films of all time
    1 keeps John Williams employed
    1 has tackled aliens, sharks, the holocaust, racism, WW1, WW2, the American Civil War, and Oprah
    Did I miss anything?

  45. February 2, 2013

    I only pointing out that he tries to hard to come off as gay.

    I’m only pointing out that I doubt you know anyone here well enough to accurately gauge how gay or straight any of us are. There’s such a thing as bi too. (Not trying to proselytize.)

  46. Maggie
    February 2, 2013

    When will the music for Les Miserables be played?

  47. Jase
    February 2, 2013

    All this love Ben Affleck is getting over a Best Director snub. Just imagine if he reminded everyone that he was snubbed for Actor too! They might give him a fucking Nobel Prize.

  48. rufussondheim
    February 2, 2013

    As good an author as Cormac McCarthy is, Phillip Roth is widely considered the top American Nobel Prize for Literature prospect.

  49. February 2, 2013


    “All this” is not for the inglorious snub.
    He deserves this acknowledgment…

    Maybe all the guilds and awards just must say: “Hey Ben, Hey world, we´re not assholes like Academy guys, ok?”

  50. Ivan
    February 2, 2013

    Is there a live stream everyone is watching.

  51. Peppermint Gummy Bear
    February 2, 2013


    You know very well that you have friends just like that. They’re always boasting about how much tang they gets. Hello….. you want to be saved so come out the closet we will help you. I am extremely thankful of how diverse these boards are. The website has come to my rescue during the darkest moments of my life. When my parents my parents spill it caused a hole in their children’s heart. When I came out, I used for my comming out and for that reactions I expected to follow.

  52. Bryce Forestieri
    February 2, 2013

    How long more before this goes down? Smirnoff coconut makes you so sleepy.

  53. acmilan03c1
    February 2, 2013

    It’s not televised. They’re getting this from tweets and stuff…

  54. kasper
    February 2, 2013

    So happy for Lena Dunham!

  55. PJ
    February 2, 2013

    Having a great night of predictions with perfect score on ADG at Gold Derby and with two tiebreakers here at DGA but really want Ben Affleck to lose to Bigelow to completely screw up the race.

  56. February 2, 2013

    Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials: Alejandro G. Inarritu, Best Job, Proctor and Gamble – Wieden + Kennedy

    It´s really a crazy year!

  57. Vu Dinh
    February 2, 2013

    Yeah! Argo. Way to go!!!

  58. Robert A.
    February 2, 2013

    Steve Pond on Twitter just said Ben Affleck won?

  59. Anthony
    February 2, 2013


  60. February 2, 2013

    SUCK THIS, ACADEMY!!!!!!!!!!!!

  61. Robert A.
    February 2, 2013

    Yes, it’s official. Ben Affleck won.

  62. steve50
    February 2, 2013

    So that means Oscar is still up for grabs.

    And on we trek.

  63. February 2, 2013


    Loved it.


  64. Vu Dinh
    February 2, 2013

    I’m so happy for Ben and Argo. Their winning sweep is just as exciting as the movie itself… I love how DGA sticks with who deserves other than just trying to predict the Oscar. Nice!

  65. Daveylow
    February 2, 2013

    At least Ben said that the other four nominees were his betters. What a travesty.

  66. Mattoc
    February 2, 2013

    Who will win the Oscar? Gotta be Lee or Russell, you would think.

  67. Mark F.
    February 2, 2013

    Congrats to Ben Affleck for his well deserved award. Argo has to be the clear frontrunner now, but Spielberg will get an Oscar as a consolation prize.

  68. filmboymichael
    February 2, 2013

    travesty? wow – kind over overstating things.

  69. PJ
    February 2, 2013

    Worst perfect score ever.

  70. February 2, 2013

    Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
    Feature Film:


    Argo (Warner Bros. Pictures)

    Mr. Affleck’s Directorial Team:

    Unit Production Manager: Amy Herman
    First Assistant Director: David Webb
    Second Assistant Director: Ian Calip
    Second Second Assistant Directors: Clark Credle, Gavin Kleintop
    First Assistant Director (Turkey Unit): Belkis Turan

    This is Mr. Affleck’s first DGA Feature Film Award.


  71. Daveylow
    February 2, 2013

    I know the four losers are all gracious but I’d love to know what they are thinking.

    And I bet Affleck never gets nominated for the DGA again.

    For those who said The King’s Speech could have been made for TV I think you could say the same for Argo.

  72. February 2, 2013

    So Affleck is the third to win DGA without a corresponding Oscar nom, but who were the other two? Ron Howard and…?

  73. Robert A.
    February 2, 2013

    @ Nick Roman

    Steven Spielberg!

  74. Vu Dinh
    February 2, 2013

    Sorry but people stop being so ridiculous about Ben’s win. Just because your “beloved” Spielberg didn’t win for the so-called due you made up out of blue, it doesn’t make Ben’s win any less deserving… So much hatred for no reason. Hope you guys are not gonna have psychotic meltdown like Sasha will probably have if Spielberg won’t win at the Oscars.

  75. Bette
    February 2, 2013


    Steven Spielberg for The Color Purple.

  76. The J Viewer
    February 2, 2013

    Congrats to Ben Affleck.

    My take, then for instance, Ang Lee still has a relatively high chance to win the BD Oscar vs, let’s say, Spielberg.

    And the BP win is still wide open.

    (Thanks for updating, Ryan.) *signed out*

  77. February 2, 2013

    Now we want public apologizes from Academy, the write-in vote for Affleck and all 7 awards for Affleck.

    And Lee for Best director.

    Now, I´m going to talk to my pillow.
    And we´re going to have so much fun… more than Day and Hudson. :)

  78. JimG.
    February 2, 2013

    Both Ron Howard and Steven Spielberg won the DGA without an Oscar nom; both would go on to win Directing Oscars later. So I’m guessing there will be a makeup Oscar for Affleck in the future. The irony being he already has one. And could well have a 2nd as producer of Argo.

  79. Nick Roman
    February 2, 2013

    For which film?

  80. ramiro
    February 2, 2013

    well guys, i think the race is kinda over.

  81. Nick Roman
    February 2, 2013

    Thanks Robert A., Bette, and Jim G.!

  82. phantom
    February 2, 2013

    I LOVED Argo, but frankly I would have been happier if the now seemingly inevitable Oscar-split resulted a BD win for Affleck and a BP win for Lincoln because at the end of the day, (arguably) Lincoln is the one that could be easily called ‘best’ in EVERY aspect (directing, writing, acting, production value). But now that could only happen if a ridiculously unlikely write-in campaign succeeds but A. that won’t happen and B. if it does, Argo has such MASSIVE support, it would win BP in a walk, too, no split then.

    I wonder if it will be a new record if after winning the Critics Choice, Golden Globe and DGA, next week Affleck wins BAFTA as well, and all that WITHOUT an Oscar nomination…and BAFTA-people LOVED Argo and they didn’t even nominate Lincoln in BD or Silver Linings Playbook in BP or BD…

  83. Ben Fan
    February 2, 2013

    “All this love Ben Affleck is getting over a Best Director snub.


    “For those who said The King’s Speech could have been made for TV I think you could say the same for Argo.”

    Please. Same could be said for Lincoln, Life of Pi and Silver Linings Playbook, too.

    Massive congrats to the DGA and Mr. Affleck.
    And to the Academy: Argo fuck yourself!

  84. Daveylow
    February 2, 2013

    @Vu Dinh–I wanted Ang Lee to win. But he does have two DGAs already.

  85. daveylow
    February 2, 2013

    @Ben Fan– You obviously haven’t seen Life of Pi because there’s no way that could have been a TV movie.

  86. Eric
    February 2, 2013

    I get the feeling that the guilds are consolation prizes for Argo and Lincoln or Silver Linings will do some major damage at the Oscars.

    The only thing that the guild wins mean is that Affleck has successfully changed the “snub” conversation in his favor, but it will trigger reactionary votes against Argo from the Academy. They’ll either go for a Lincoln sweep or a Silver Linings surprise.

    On a lighter note, I stumbled upon this image on another site. Jessica Chastain’s Maya makes some teen cry. I giggled:

  87. Astarisborn
    February 2, 2013

    As Steve50 says “oscar is up for grabs” now. Affleck’s win does leave best director and even best picture even more wide open than before. I think I remember reading somewhere that if Affleck wins DGA, it might hurt the chances of Argo winning best picture because of the un likeliness of a split. From now on, it is gonna be a head scratcher.

  88. Mohammed
    February 2, 2013

    The Academy made itself look awful this year. No matter what happens; ARGO cleaning up will have done serious damage to any other film.

    Come Oscar night if another film wins it’s because the Academy wanted to give a consolation prize. It’s like awarding the runner up because the real winner was caught in a trafick jam.

  89. February 2, 2013

    Three actor-directors beat Martin Scorsese for Best Director before the DGA finally let Marty win one.

    #RagingBull #Goodfellas #TheAviator
    #Redford #Costner #Eastwood #rimjob

  90. phantom
    February 2, 2013

    By the way, I’m not buying the ‘Affleck only wins because of the pity party’ argument. He received 3 Bafta nominations (Picture, Director, Actor) a day BEFORE the Oscar nominations, won Critics Choice the day of the Oscar nominations, the Golden Globe three days later. It’s highly unlikely that the BFCA/HFPA voting hadn’t closed by then but even if it hadn’t, the majority of the votes had been definitely already sent.

    So basically only the DGA voters knew about the Oscar-snub and they still awarded him, and as precedent shows, they tend to agree with the Academy…so they clearly had strong enough feelings about this particular directing achievement if they still went with him DESPITE the Oscar-snub.

    What we tend to forget that until the Oscar nominations announcement, Affleck had been widely considered a potential frontrunner in Best Director : he won 9 critics groups BD awards (Bigelow won 11, Spielberg and Lee maybe 2 each), was 1 of only 3 contenders who had all 4 of BFCA-HFPA-DGA-BAFTA nominations (Bigelow and Lee were the other two, Spielberg was snubbed by the BAFTA) and his film was THE ONLY ONE that had those 4 crucial BD nominations, also BP nominations from BFCA-HFPA-PGA-BAFTA, a WGA nod AND a SAG Ensemble nod (Lincoln missed the BAFTA BD, ZD30 missed the SAG Ensemble).

    So as much as I’m rooting for Lincoln, let’s not pretend that Affleck is winning these awards because of the ‘pity party’…he has been considered potentially THE best of 2012 long before the Oscar snub.

  91. eclipse22
    February 2, 2013

    :) :) :)

    GO ARGO CRY YOUR HEART OUT COMPETITION!!!! ha ha ha ha if his surprise was anything to go buy at the SAG awards i can only imagine how giddy he must be feeling right now! good for him ,good for his team crew and cast for making a nail-bitter of a film!

    of course it helps tom hooper wasn’t in contention or else i’d be miffed on his behalf !

    i like ben , i’ve liked him even when he was with j-lo , i’ve liked his films so yeah i’m genuinely very happy for him! he’s hollywood heir apparent for the director chair even if he has years and many films ahead of him before that occurs!

    be back for bafta…GO ARGO BEST PICTURE YOURSELF!!!!

  92. mecid
    February 2, 2013

    and 3 actor-directors beat Spielberg if we count Allen actor-director.

  93. February 2, 2013

    whoa, wow.

  94. Ben Fan
    February 2, 2013

    10 bucks says that Ang Lee wins the Oscar for Best Director.

    And next year they will change the rule and allow over five nominees for Best Director.

  95. The Zach
    February 2, 2013

    I have to plant myself in the “the Best Picture and Director races are still wide open.” History doesn’t favor “Argo” in myriad ways and it’s still anyone’s game for Best Director.

    At this point, nothing beyond an “Amour” or “Beasts of the Southern Wild” sweep would surprise me.

  96. Film Fatale
    February 2, 2013

    Oh Jesus Christ, enough already. Argo? I mean, really? Argo? Argo? Seriously. There is no way in HELL that film is better than Zero Dark Thirty, Life of Pi and even Lincoln.

    Honestly here is what it will come down to — seeing pretty Ben (as producer), pretty Jennifer, pretty Anne, etc. all awarded on Oscar night. Argo is a perfectly fine and very exciting Hollywood movie with absolutely zero subtext, depth or complexity. It has the look and feel of an “important” political thriller but all is really is happens to be a “good guys win” thing with a rabble rousing finale.

    Very sad that the true masterpieces of this year are being swept under the carpet — it’s a debacle that the vision of Bigelow, Lee and Spielberg are apparently inferior to a solid popcorn mucher of a movie.

  97. Yvette
    February 2, 2013

    Vu Dinh,
    It’s not just about ‘beloved Lincoln’ -
    It’s about veteran masters like Lee and Spielberg at the height of their artistic peaks, visionary films like ZD30, Beasts or emotionally raw and resonant films like Amour…. all the films left out that were much more interesting and original like Bernie, Killer Joe and so many others..
    Out of all these….Argo? Not in this universe.
    Just how well-worn are Clooney’s knee pads?
    Harvey ain’t got nothing on him.

  98. Winston
    February 2, 2013

    I don’t think what happened with Argo is that surprising. Once ZDT melted down the BP race was realistically between Argo and Lincoln and Argo is the more critically favored film.

  99. Yvette
    February 2, 2013

    And I forgot to mention The Master …
    I’ve been rooting for Lincoln and all this time I was thinking this a tough competition this year. But I never thought these great films would be upstaged by Argo!
    I saw, enjoyed it…
    But I never for one second thought ‘this is going to dominate awards season’Never.

  100. christiannnw
    February 2, 2013


  101. goodvibe61
    February 3, 2013

    This is like Robert Benton defeating Francis Ford Coppola. Like Tom Hooper beating David Fincher. Like Kevin Costner defeating Martin Scorsese. Like Bob Fosse defeating Coppola.

    It’s sickening. It’s laughable. You don’t know whether to laugh or cry. It makes these awards a little less meaningful every year.

    Oh well, at least there’s the big game today to help forget about it. And the Oscars? It’s a done deal, so we might as well move on now, and try and forget about them before they ever happen.

  102. lily
    February 3, 2013

    ok- so, the big question now is, does the academy stand by what their nominations said? they do not have a history of being pushed around by the guilds because of perceived “snubs,” as we know. we have two other guys who won here and lost BP, spielberg and howard. the academy may have an averse reaction to affleck’s wins now and say wait a minute, we didn’t even like you or your movie as much as other films, we’re not voting for you out of pity. i’m skeptical here, i really am. this movie will be a complete and total anomaly if it pulls this off and it all would have been because of ben affleck’s snub? something seems off. and if preferential balloting is the only thing that benefits it, there’s a serious chance that it could do it without winning anything else! or just editing. their nominations said they didn’t like this movie as much as some of the others- does that all change because of this little pity party the guilds decided to throw? or does the academy say fuck you, we do what we want?

  103. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    Getting the highest rating on RT is misleading. It’s relative…Argo was the least divisive. Hence, the higher rating. But a 4-star review for Argo does not equal a
    4-star review of ZD30 or Lincoln. Anything with balls is not going to get unanimous praise. It’s like a guitar class: Jimi Hendrix’s A is not equal to Joey Turdblaster’s A. All good grades are not created equal.

  104. daveinprogress
    February 3, 2013

    “And I don’t think this means, that I am somebody, but i guess i’m on my way” – Cher – 1988 (60th Academy Awards)

    “I don’t think this makes me a real director, but I think it means I’m on my way,” he said as he accepted the honor. – Ben Affleck 2013 DGA Recipient.

  105. February 3, 2013

    Maybe i am wrong, but with the exception of Daniel Day Lewis, i got the feeling that Lincoln has no really a chance at the Oscars ( maybe a couple of technical awards ). For me, the director award will go to Ang Lee, for the beautiful, not masterpiece, but great Life of Pi. The BAFTA´S could give us a clue in the next days. Just my opinion!

  106. AnthonyP
    February 3, 2013

    And I thought it was violent during the Social Network/King’s Speech debate.

    I love how Argo is supposed to be some piece of shit all of a sudden. Is the all the hatred really over this movie? I blame Daniel Day Lewis’ awesomeness for blinding people to the fact that Lincoln was just a very good movie with an exceptional actor. How hard is it to direct DDL?

  107. February 3, 2013

    the fact that Lincoln is just a very good movie with an exceptional actor.

    oh can I play this game?
    how about the fact that Argo is just a good movie without an exceptional actor.

  108. terri woods
    February 3, 2013

    Not buying the theory that the Ben snub is winning him all these awards. I just think Argo is the most popular choice amongst voters and he would have won them all anyway.
    Some people need to practice the mantra that ‘the trick is not minding’ because the meltdowns some are having over the Argo wins are a little disconcerting from someone who genuinely loves movies.Really happy to see Ben win for Argo as it was one of my favorite movies last year.

  109. Ben Fan
    February 3, 2013

    AnthonyP: “How hard is it to direct DDL?”

    Want the truth? The hardest part is in casting him, i.e. getting him to agree to the part. If Spielberg wins his third Oscar, it will be for just that hurdle alone. He will have to thank Leonardo DiCaprio when he gets up there!

    I agree with everything this yahoo user said: “The Academy now really looks stupid considering that the 360 members of the directors portion did not even nominate him and the 16,000 members of the DGA not only nominated him but gave him the honor of best director of a feature film.”

  110. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    Anthony P.
    No one is saying that Argo is a
    shit movie. It’s just not the best film of the year.
    It’s not better than Pi, it’s not better than ZD30, it’s not better than Beasts, it’s not better than Amour, it’s not better than The Master, it’s not better than Django….and it sure as hell is not better than Lincoln.
    Don’t let your disdain for Lincoln supporters blind you to those minor facts.

  111. February 3, 2013

    Bullseye. Don’t ever stop contributing comments, Yvette.

  112. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    Ben Fan,
    That’s bullshit. So who do you suggest should have been left off that BD list of the ones nominated? If there was a snub, it was Bigelow, not Affleck. Affleck is a popular, likeable guy with a very powerful benefactor behind him, Clooney. It’s got EVERYTHING to do with that. Actors, directors get ‘snubbed’ every year …Affleck just has more powerful pals and a sexier beard. Hopefully, the Academy will resist the temptation to cater to this overblown lovefest.

  113. Sammy
    February 3, 2013

    My two cents is on Haneke winning the BD Oscar. BP is wide open in my view.

  114. February 3, 2013

    AnthonyP: I’m with you: DDL is so great, that he doesn’t need director. An interesting fact is that he could be the first actor in a Spielberg movie to win an acting award. In fact, many critics say that is the weakness of Spielberg, he’s a great filmmaker, but not so great as an acting director, like Martin Scorsese, Clint Eastwood or Woody Allen.

  115. Sammy
    February 3, 2013

    With all these precursor awards even it does not have a BD nod we can comfortably say Argo is the favorite going into Oscars. But anything can happen on BP side including Amour and Beasts. They both have the chance for winning BP along with the screenplay and directing awards.

  116. manrico1967
    February 3, 2013

    Ben Affleck wins the DGA….


  117. February 3, 2013

    The only award he TOTALLY deserves…

  118. Question Mark
    February 3, 2013

    Well ain’t this something. As much as Awards Daily has been decrying the lack of suspense the last two years at the Oscars, they are in for a doozy of a head-scratcher this year. I think maybe one or two the eight major categories that can be confidently predicted at this point, at most.

    BP: Argo is looking like the favourite now but you wonder if its underdog push is coming too soon, and Lincoln could retake the lead. Or, if it’s truly a zany year, maybe Life Of Pi or Amour (both “no drama” nominees without controversy) can get enough votes for a true shocker of a result. Both films could also be helped…

    BD: …if Haneke or Lee win the directing award. This is the most totally wide-open Best Director race in DECADES, possibly ever. I’d say Zeitlin winning would still count as a massive upset, but any of the other four nominees are realistic options at this point. Someone made the great comment on this site a few weeks ago that the 20-30 minutes between the Director Oscar and the Picture Oscar are going to be the most tension-filled in years. If Lee/Spielberg/Haneke/Russell win, does that make their film the favourite again?

    Actress: Lawrence is still the favourite yet it wouldn’t be surprising at all if the very respected Chastain won (perhaps as a make-up for voters who feel about the ZDT controversy) or if Riva won as a semi-lifetime achievement award.

    Actor: Day-Lewis is still the favourite and I’d say even though Lincoln is losing momentum, he’s still got it. The only realistic upset candidate is Cooper at this point and that’s a longshot.

    Supporting Actress: Hathaway still the favourite, this is the only result I’d predict with firm confidence. Even then, a Sally Field victory wouldn’t be completely shocking.

    Supporting Actor: Basically completely wide open. Whatever small lead Jones might’ve had is gone.

    Adapted Screenplay: Kushner still a favourite given his name, and this and DDL could end up being Lincoln’s only Oscars.

    Original Screenplay: Two-horse race between Haneke and Tarantino, could easily go either way.

    “For those who said The King’s Speech could have been made for TV I think you could say the same for Argo.”

    You could say the same for Lincoln, and call it “The West Wing 1865″

  119. Ben Fan
    February 3, 2013

    Leo, don’t forget Elia Kazan who directed 21 different actors in Oscar-nominated performances.

  120. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013

    Hey guys remember when Affleck and Bigelow got snubbed people said that it would make the race more exciting and unpredictable because the Academy was not following the Guilds?

    Yeah me neither. I just don’t see how anyone can say Argo is NOT the frontrunner now. Sure Beasts and Amour could cause an upset, but I’m not getting that feeling. And Academy members might not have known the DGA nominees before casting their nominee ballot but they are seeing who’s winning all the precursors now so an upset is unlikely.

  121. phantom
    February 3, 2013

    I think AMOUR has the potential to shock. It WILL win at least one category (foreign language film), it COULD easily win a second (original screenplay) and it MIGHT win a third (actress). Frankly, I believe it will win ALL three of those categories and IF Haneke takes the BD Bafta (he is the only European nominee), I think he might just win the BD Oscar, as well. Question is could AMOUR actually win ALL of its categories EXCEPT Best Picture OR could it shock in BP, too ? Well, in a year like this…

    P.S. It DEFINITELY has the ‘underdog’ factor down : lowest grossing BP-nominee about dying old people in a foreign language. It could be also the kind of prestigious pick few could/would argue.

  122. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013

    That said, I have nothing against Ben Affleck as a director. Having seen Gone Baby Gone, and The Town I do think he’s a true talent. Still haven’t seen Argo but I will. And I still haven’t seen Lincoln yet as well(don’t kill me Sasha! I’m broke so my movie funds are limited.)

    And on a shallow note, he is looking hot in that picture.

  123. manrico1967
    February 3, 2013

    I think LINCOLN is the first movie in which Spielberg’s direction is not the most celebrated thing about it.

    The only sure things for LINCOLN on Oscar night are Actor and Screenplay. Even the idiots at the Academy can fuck these two up.

    Another thought: If LINCOLN wins BP at the Oscars, it will be the movie with the least precursors BP wins in recent history. Even CRASH at least won the Chicago Critics and the SAG (SAG is not a BP award, but people treat it like one).

    It is also guaranteed that the Best Director winner will be one w/o precursors wins.

  124. Mattoc
    February 3, 2013

    There is too much shitting on other movies lately. I mean really immature and obnoxious comments.
    I read here every day, but have little interest in participating lately.

  125. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    Now you guys are just making up
    Actors feed off creative energy. No film
    exists in a vacuum.
    DDL thrived with Spielberg, PTA, Sheridan, Scorsese. Not so much with Rob Marshall, so there goes your theory.
    There has to a visionary foundation.
    Otherwise you get Nine.
    Ryan, Sasha,
    When did this Spielberg-is-hack groupthink begin? I’m curious. The criticisms are never elaborated – just this same generic, uniform disdain, like they’ve been conditioned to have this resistance to Spielberg.
    I despise that kind of pretension. And it is pretension because people cannot be that identical in their commentary.

  126. xyanthus
    February 3, 2013

    So I’m confused. Is there an award for feature animation? I’ve looked everywhere and cannot find a list of nominees, nor can I confirm this from any source, but here. Did DGA give an award to Wreck-It Ralph or is this a mistake. Source please.

  127. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013

    “When did this Spielberg-is-hack groupthink begin? I’m curious. The criticisms are never elaborated – just this same generic, uniform disdain, like they’ve been conditioned to have this resistance to Spielberg.”

    Yeah I’m wondering this as well. Spielberg can be a bit too feel good and safe at times but when he’s at his best he is great. 1998 should’ve been Spielberg vs. Malick, but then Weinstein somehow weaseled his way in there.

    And it can’t be campaigning factor cause as I’ve mentioned above me there are people in Hollywood who are far more egregious in their campaigning than Speilberg can ever hope to be. So, what is it, I don’t know. But I do know he should have more Oscars than he does.

  128. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013

    And BTW I know Speilberg won the Director Oscar for Saving Private Ryan but lost BP to Shakespeare in Love. I’m just saying that movie had no business being an actual contender that year with two great movies competing.

  129. Dave
    February 3, 2013

    Life of Pi is taking at least 5 Oscars, probably more, including BP and BD. Simple. Don’t know why people don’t see this. Lincoln is so dead and Silver Linings just isn’t strong enough.

  130. AnthonyP
    February 3, 2013

    “oh can I play this game?
    how about the fact that Argo is just a good movie without an exceptional actor.”

    Exactly why Ben DGA. Good movie even without exceptional actor. That means great directing.

  131. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    Jade Fox,
    I have a cousin.
    She and her husband go are the type to
    champion artsy fartsy things.. They go out of their way to stay clear of the mainstream because they’re oh-so-edgy and above-it-all. When I mentioned to her last year that I couldn’t wait too see
    Lincoln, she said rather curtly and condescendingly, ‘I don’t like Spielberg.’
    And that, apparently, was that. It’s an elitism, a pseudo-intellectual pretension that sneers at the status quo….or what they perceive as the status quo. It’s a contempt toward anything ‘popular’ ….
    That kind of attitude happens among music fans or any kind of art form. It’s
    the kind pretentious crap Woody Allen mocked in Annie Hall.
    They’re sheep.

  132. AnthonyP
    February 3, 2013

    ” It’s an elitism, a pseudo-intellectual pretension that sneers at the status quo….or what they perceive as the status quo. It’s a contempt toward anything ‘popular’ ….”

    Funny, you can say the same about the Argo/Affleck haters.

  133. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013


    Ugh yeah I hate that “It’s popular so it must suck” crowd. They are no better than the people who won’t give anything that isn’t already popular a chance. Hell both groups are two sides of the same fucking coin.

    Perhaps you should tell them that the chances of Lincoln winning the major Oscars now are slim to none? Are they interested in the awards race at all?

  134. rufussondheim
    February 3, 2013

    Still think Russell is going to win the Best Director at the Oscars. I would hate that so much, but things are getting set up for him nicely.


    Yvette, people who do not like Spielberg have their reasons and they’ve been discussed here over and over again. Bette just made a lengthy post in the last 48 hours somewhere, let me see if I can find it.

  135. BlueFox94
    February 3, 2013

    @xyanthus DGA seriously needs to include an animated feature and animated TV program categories. PGA has them!

  136. rufussondheim
    February 3, 2013

    OK, here is a long post from Bette, not all of it has to do with Spielberg, but I want her remarks to be in context so I’m pretty much cut and posting the entire movie-centric portion.

    I also disliked “Crash” way before the Oscars. The hatred for Crash isn’t just because it beat deserving winner Brokeback. Its not Crash’s fault that the Academy contains way too many openly neo-conservative bigots. Its that Crash was a very divisive film, even upon its release. Some loved it, like Ebert & Oprah. But most major critics did not like it, it even made worst film lists. Its 69 at metacritic is a lucky score considering its detractors, its that the supporters like Ebert put it at the top. All I know is that if you search the web, Crash has solidly replaced Greatest Show on Earth as the film considered the worst to win Best Picture at the Oscars. Also, other upset Best Picture winners, like Miss Daisy, Chariots and Shakespeare are not nearly as reviled, even though few feel they deserved their (dubious) prize. Few non-upset winners deserved their dubious prize too.

    As for Spielberg, its easy to say those who dislike him are jealous. Some, no doubt, for his mega-success is a fact. Notice that other revered directors of the past 40 years or so are not as controversial. Scorsese, Ang, the Coen Brothers, Altman, Lumet, Kubrick, etc….none with so many detractors, none so divisive, not even David Lynch.But I for one tend to dislike many of his films because he uses over-wrought scores and sentimental, manipulative tricks to persuade his audience. He doesn’t show, he TELLS. Now Lincoln was a very happy exception. He allowed the screenplay to guide, and the actors to shine, he’ll almost certainly finally have directed someone to a Best Director Oscar. Restraint just isn’t usually a word in his vocabulary.

    As for Muhammad’s War Horse point that Ryan and others snarkily dismiss, I agree. It was a bad film of a great play. So what that some other groups embraced it? Most didn’t, and it took the place of far more deserving films that could have been nominated instead, like Drive, Melancholia and masterpiece A Separation, among others. And, in my opinion, the Academy got it right in denying him a nomination for Color Purple and Empire of the Sun. Loud, manipulative direction, the worst element of otherwise terrific work (yes, I understand the director is at the helm, but sorry, the Spielberg “touch” (more like a hammer) diminished the work of his team).

    You say the Academy has underrated Spielberg? Nonsense. Munich was NOT expected to be nominated in 2005. Well, no, it certainly was before the awards season began. But then begin it did, and not only was it steam-rolled by Brokeback, but often it wasn’t even a Best Picture competitor, and by the time the nominations were announced, most thought Walk the Line would take its place for pic, and that David Cronenberg would finally get a director nod for History of Violence (or even Michael Haneke for Cache). But again, the Academy – which I strongly dislike – got it right, Munich was riveting, and mostly extremely well directed, except for the very unfortunate scene where he cut between the sex and the murders (can anyone imagine Scorsese or Fincher or Nolan or Ang or Milos Forman or so many others directing it that way??).

    So, with Spielberg, I think its a mixed bag. Sure he’s in the pantheon, but I think its telling that not one of his films made the Sight & Sound Top 101 films at the critics poll last August (please don’t snicker that I mention Sight & Sound, if people here truly love movies, then they’ll look to that list way more than the Oscars for what to watch and learn from). On the other hand, a Spielberg film did make the director’s top 100, that was Jaws. Shame on the Academy for snubbing him in 1975? Not really. Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon, Altman’s Nashville, Forman’s Cuckoo’s Nest and Fellini’s Amarcord all rank as high or higher at the pantheon. That leaves Lumet’s Dog Day Afternoon, ranked on par with Jaws (and a film I feel is a lot more complex). It was just a tough year. So stop playing violins for Spielberg, his 7 nods puts him in the top 10 ever at the Oscars, his 8 Best Picture nods make him #2 in that category behind William Wyler, and his 2 victories for director are also pretty darn good, with a 3rd likely around the corner (alas…I said I liked Lincoln, but I don’t think he deserves an Oscar for it, against Amour, Argo, ZDT, Life of Pi and Beasts).

    I’m in the Beasts camp, though it has no chance.

    Granted, it’s not as full and detailed as it could be, but then, she wasn’t responding to Yvette’s post.

  137. Yvette
    February 3, 2013

    It’s funny how people referred condescendingly to Lincoln as
    the ”Oscar-bait’, safe’, ‘non-threatening’, ‘feelgood’, ‘predictable’, ‘stuffy’ choice: the ‘establishment’ film tailor-made for award season. Ha!
    It was never the easier, safer, unchallenging film and Argo is proving that. Lincoln is just too esoteric and cerebral for award season.
    Ironically, 170mil at the box office makes it’s

  138. rufussondheim
    February 3, 2013

    As for me, the main reason I dislike Spielberg is his lack of ability to creating interesting character arcs. I think that’s the main reason no one has ever won an acting Oscar from him. Even Lincoln, the character, has no arc, although the Abe/Mary relationship is more complex and interesting than any pairing since Schindler with Feinnes and Davidtz and maybe even longer than that.

    The second reason I find Spielberg to be dull is that I think he uses the same bag of tricks too often which causes too many of his scenes to be predictable.

  139. JD
    February 3, 2013

    Interesting how a snub can boost your chances when it comes to winning big. Anyway, Argo is the quintessence of Hollywood: a Hollywood movie stars acts/directs/produces, another Hollywood star produces and last but not least, the movie itself is all about Hollywood making history. Despite its historical background Argo ended up being a fairy-tale story although a good one you can definitely enjoy. Was there a safest alternative for voters? Hollywood and awards are all about self-celebration.

    Instead of making up for snubs just think twice before snubbing. Once the damage is done, focus on the best among those who escaped the snub. Otherwise you just keep snubbing, as unfortunately is happening with Lincoln.

    Btw, the most shameful snub was the one to Bigelow who made a movie which was all about directing.

  140. Jade Fox
    February 3, 2013

    “Btw, the most shameful snub was the one to Bigelow who made a movie which was all about directing.”

    So true. As great as the acting in 0D30 was the movie wouldn’t have worked so well for me without a great director at the helm.

    As for Lincoln one of the first criticisms I heard about it was how “talky” it was and it was like watching The History Channel. So it doesn’t sound like the safe choice to me since Oscars don’t really award movies that are “talky.” They like movies that make them feel something, not lecture them.

  141. Alfred
    February 3, 2013

    The problem with Argo is that there’s a huge difference between directing well and outstanding directing. Awards should be about rewarding those who excel, not those who did a good job. Somehow I think the Academy likes to play it safe by being conventional and politically correct rather then daring to go for the most visionary filmmakers. For instance, Lincoln and Zero Dark Thirty are both examples of visionary film-making: but you just can’t look at them from the same angle. SLP winning would be ridiculous, it already is ridiculous its main supporting actress is the safest bet in the best actress category. I agree Life of Pi was powerful but not a masterpiece. Beasts was fine but I doubt they’ll go for the newcomer. Unfortunately, it’s Argo’s time.

  142. mecid
    February 3, 2013

    Ok. I will accept great amount of Sielberg hate as jealousy. There is not another reason.

  143. Reichdome back with avengeance
    February 3, 2013

    ” Awards should be about rewarding those who excel, not those who did a good job. ” well said Alfred could not have said it better myself.

    This years oscars will descend into farce and one of the more forgettable oscar best picture/ director/ screenplay wins for a decade. Of one of the most undeserving films to win best picture in the history of the academy.

    I pissed off not because spielberg did not win. But because for guilds and likely oscar- yet again it about who most likeable NOT which film excels to aspire to greatness which Lincoln on ALL counts is.

    For Lincoln to engage so many to be a blockbuster- at one level merely being a film about politics in old times. But at another level. the ambition, time and energy and trouble to bring the film to life surely has to count as what once oscar used to regard as the film that wins is indeed the best of the year.

    It been a long time since so many people in the public- us as filmgoers have been so against the idea of argo and affleck winning the oscar.

    Now i seen Lincoln, and my instincts served me well. It was everything i hoped and more. And there was real drama about the most pivotal of decisions ANY government around the world made at the time in terms of the course of history for their nation.

    Not since Gone with the Wind has there been a film as significant and important not just to the american psyche- but also to those who believe in humanity’s best potential in the echelons and in the name of equality between the races.

    One screenwriter, and over a decade to bring this film masterpiece to life. amongst Spielbergs best up there easily with Schindler’s List and Saving PRivate Ryan in my mind.

    In fact, in a lot of people’s mind. Even critics are united in praising another breakthrough visionary film genre that spielberg done. Hardly any divided.

    Vs. the new frontrunner many of us regret to say. IT represents…OScar’s ugly face of mediocrity. Argo is actually the conservative choice…it is the safe movie. it unambitious and uninspiring. So…what does it have going for it? simply put. oscar will embrace it cos it a film produced by producers about producers producing a film.

    Big friccking deal.. oh but it is you see. Affleck and Clooney the ‘hottest’ celebrities going around. Even on that score Clooney not had favourable media oh surprise surprise guess who the most incorruptible and positively recieved of contenders? Spielberg and his never cease to amaze team.

    Yet on that front we expected to believe he less ‘likeable’ so what? does this mean oscar discriminate against the aged? and would go for pple of affleck and clooney generation cos they are young and hip?

    OScar hear most of us as we cry out in utter despair- you are a bloody disgrace…you shove down our throat something of a film that would not have had a chance in hell to win in better more consistent times with oscar.. and embrace mediocrity at the expense of grand vision, important vision, ambition and real drama..carefully written easily the best acted of the contenders…and you say ‘ we oscar are not good enough and do not deserve the right to embrace the true BEST OF THE BEST cos we get it wrong so many times in the past decade we best get it wrong again. That our new culture that what we do. screw vision screw ambition spielberg ? he had his due even if his last film we regret deeply should have won in saving private ryan.”

    Lincoln is too good too special for us to embrace so we give it tech awards and writting instead and acting …and though itl win the most oscars on the night it will not win best picture and director? ”

    Oscar,.. you embrace mediocrity you cannot possibly expect a praiseworthy response from us the public who give your films the real recognition they deserve us who films are made for.

    Turn the clock back at the time gone with the wind won big time…and you would never expect it would have lost….and if a film of that calibre which we have in Lincoln this year came along no, in this era im afraid to be ‘good’ enough for oscar you need to be mediocre:P and that is the biggest bullshit of all…that oscar are set to serve up in a decade at least they are set..for one of the most heinous and disgraceful decisions in oscar history…wow what a achievement that will be oscar a great big screwed up black mark agaisnt your name.

  144. Praetor
    February 3, 2013

    Okay, so it’s not gonna happen for Lincoln.

    Cool, since Argo is obviously better.

  145. February 3, 2013

    Is this it, then? From here to eternity…

  146. praetor
    February 3, 2013

    And Lincoln isn’t cerebral or esoteric.

    Well, perhaps compared to Michael Bay, but compared to the average European or Asian arthouse movie, it is easily digestible with a very low threshold, which is vintage Spielberg.

  147. Pierre de Plume
    February 3, 2013

    the 20-30 minutes between the Director Oscar and the Picture Oscar are going to be the most tension-filled in years.

    But by then we’ll most likely know the winner of best adapted screenplay. That’s the category whose outcome I find the more telling.

  148. Dave
    February 3, 2013

    Jeez!!! Argo is an okay film, but winning all this, really? It’s reminded me of the year of Brokeback Mountain there’s a mediocre one called C*R*A*S*H.

  149. Lana
    February 3, 2013

    Ok guys, congrats to ben. But honestly it does kinda suck because come oscar night, he Wont win best director, but just might take bp! But now for some reason im not really looking forward til the oscars…….i just HOPE they shock us come oscars, and give us different from what we have now been witnessing! Im bored now with these same winners! I just want ONE major surprise! But am glad these awards r almost over! Evrryone on this board throwing tantrums over winners!

  150. Erik815
    February 3, 2013

    Interesting – if meaningless – statistics on the Academy Award success of films starring Daniel Day Lewis in the last 3 decades (we’re not counting 1982′s Ghandi which was his first credited role and no more than a bit part):

    - 5 nominations for best actor; 2 wins (so far)
    - 6 films nominated for best film; 0 wins (so far)
    - 6 films nominated for best director; 0 wins (so far)
    - 64 nominations in the last 3 decades; 9 wins (so far)
    - 43 nominations in the last 2 decades; 4 wins (so far)
    - 34 nominations in the last decade; 2 wins (so far)

    Besides his own 2 oscars, his films have only won in the ‘big 8′ categories twice. All wins were:

    - Best Adapted Screenplay (Room with a View, 1985)
    - Best Art Direction (Room with a View, 1985)
    - Best Costume Design (Room with a View, 1985)
    - Best Actor (My Left Foot, 1989)
    - Best Supporting Actress (My Left Foot, 1989)
    - Best Sound (Last of the Mohicans, 1992)
    - Best Costume Design (The Age Of Innocence, 1993)
    - Best Actor (There Will Be Blood, 2007)
    - Best Cinematography (There Will Be Blood, 2007)

    Best picture and director ‘losers’ were:

    - Room with a View (7 nominations, 3 wins)
    - My Left Foot (5 nominations, 2 wins)
    - In the Name of the Father (7 nominations, 0 wins)
    - Gangs of New York (10 nominations, 0 wins)
    - There Will Be Blood (8 nominations, 2 wins)

    So far DDL’s films have not had a great track record at the oscars, especially in major categories. This might contribute to a perception that his films are not always that great outside of his performance (which, for the record, I respectfully disagree with). It will be interesting to see if Lincoln breaks this track record.

  151. Ben Fan
    February 3, 2013

    “the fact that Lincoln is just a very good movie with an exceptional actor.”

    “oh can I play this game?
    how about the fact that Argo is just a good movie without an exceptional actor.”

    “Exactly why Ben DGA. Good movie even without exceptional actor. That means great directing.”


    “It’s an elitism, a pseudo-intellectual pretension that sneers at the status quo….or what they perceive as the status quo. It’s a contempt toward anything ‘popular’ ….”

    “Funny, you can say the same about the Argo/Affleck haters.”


    “Not since Gone with the Wind has there been a film as significant and important not just to the american psyche- but also to those who believe in humanity’s best potential in the echelons and in the name of equality between the races.”


  152. Terometer
    February 3, 2013

    People don’t hate Lincoln. People probably just dislike those who overpush Lincoln. I mean, 14-nom fantasy, boxoffice giant, non-stop historical messages, only-for-smart-people crap, and especially an over-passionate blogger who would take down any other film that has a chance to top Lincoln.

  153. joe calahan
    February 3, 2013

    Steven Spielberg should’ve won. why can’t he win the DGA. it isn’t fair. Micheal Hameke maybe the surprise winner on oscar night for Amour but i want Spielberg to win for Lincoln. Lincoln was so well directed and slowly paced. Now with Amour, it’s foreign language film so it’s not out of the race yet. I remember the year Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon won for Best Director-Ang Lee. I’ve also seen awards shows where directors who’ve done for foreign language films win for best director and best picture. As for Argo, it’s the front-runner at this point in the game it’s sweeping all the awards. Beasts of the Southern Wild came out too early in the year. The Life of Pi-Ang Lee still has a shot at best director.

  154. steve50
    February 3, 2013

    Affleck’s win was a pat on the back for a new director who has proved – three films in a row – that he is capable of telling a story in a riveting way. It is also a bit of a congratulations for one of their industry colleagues, one of the most affable, for turning his tailspinning career around after going from Oscar-winning screenwriter to tabloid fodder. This is not an unjustified gesture and it probably couldn’t happen to a nicer, smarter guy.

    The omission by AMPAS probably played a huge role in DGA members writing down his name, but so what. That’s all a part of the game this time of year.

    But I’m guessing that this is where that train stops. The final Oscar ballots have not yet been released. Between now and Feb 19th, the real campaigning begins. Some of the pixie dust if the past couple of weeks will stick to Argo, but I do not see AMPAS gving its top prize to a film simply based on empathy and affection for its non-nominated director.

    There would appear to be a battle royal now between Lincoln and Silver Linings Playbook, both of which have considerable ground to make up. The Weinstein machine versus Disney.

    It’s also important to remember that a few of other remaining guild awards coming will likely favor one film that is NEITHER of those two – Life of Pi.

    The big one will be the WGA, adapted screenplay – for the first time, all the big players are in the same category with each other. Terrio vs Kushner vs Russell vs Magee – who will it be?

    This is far from over.

  155. Dennis Bee
    February 3, 2013

    Pardon me if some of these points have been made before:

    1. Why ARGO is winning in Hollywood:
    a. Affleck is the latest Comeback Kid, disproving Fitzgerald–Sometimes there ARE second acts in American life.
    b. ARGO may stumble in its third act (the cheesy police chase on the runway), but it’s original. The theme in the last quarter of 2012 has been that audiences WILL go to adult dramas–the kinds of smart movies they don’t make anymore. ARGO was out there first, and sometimes first matters.
    c. ARGO is a Hollywood-on-Hollywood film, but with a twist: a Hollywood-on-Washington-on Hollywood movie. Its Hollywood elements are affectionate but accurate. The movie makers are the good guys, and patriotic yet. A former U.S. president introduced LINCOLN at the Globes. The present president hosted the filmmakers at the White House. But a former president is IN the epilogue of ARGO (albeit in voiceover), and the film even makes him look more adept than he appeared during his presidency.
    d. It’s a strange but true story. Unlike ZERO DARK THIRTY’s murk of perhaps classified secrets and too-recent-to-go-there controversy, ARGO’s middle-eastern politics are safely in the past–but not really. The world still lives with the ’79 revolution in Iran.
    e. Not only is the film a throwback to the films of the 1970s, but many of today’s Academy members were young or in their prime near the time the film is set. Ironically, the films that ARGO most strongly recalls (DOG DAY AFTERNOON, ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN, THREE DAYS OF THE CONDOR) failed to win Best Picture Oscars, and the directors most strongly evoked by ARGO, stylistically, Sidney Lumet and Alan J. Pakula, never won a DGA or an Oscar.

  156. Dennis Bee
    February 3, 2013

    Reasons why LINCOLN could still win Best Picture, and in fact, sweep:

    1. In the only other two cases of the DGA voting for directors not nominated for Oscars (Spielberg, ’85; Howard, ’95) the Academy largely or entirely ignored their movies and got behind another film entirely. LINCOLN would seem better positioned to do so than either OUT OF AFRICA or BRAVEHEART appeared to be before the Oscars.

    2. Spielberg will win Director and could pull in the film, a la GODFATHER, PART II or DEPARTED.

    3. DDL will win Actor and could pull in the film, a la Nicholson and Fletcher with CUCKOO’S NEST, Tandy with DRIVING MISS DAISY, G.C. Scott with PATTON, and others where a lead performance looked stronger than the film going in.

  157. steve50
    February 3, 2013

    Very interesting set of stats, Erik815! There is not a bad film in the entire bunch, arguably, some classics.

    Could their poor track record at the Oscars be put down to the fact that DDL actually outshines most of his films? That’s a possibility, especially if his brilliant performances are given the lion’s share of the credit for the film’s success. It becomes easy to award a film’s outstanding performance and move on to other movies for the remaining of the accolades.

  158. steve50
    February 3, 2013


  159. Astarisborn
    February 3, 2013

    Excellent analysis steve50 on what’s ahead. I think also that Argo, a good and respected film without a best director nom, has its hill to climb going forward. Exciting to see where BAFTA and the rest of the guilds go.

  160. Byron Gray
    February 3, 2013

    I’ve been saying it for months: Argo will win the Academy Award because any film with good reviews that portrays “Hollywood” or “filmmaking” in a positive light will nab the Oscar. I won’t mention the hypocrisy of the Hollywood community in arriving at the selection of Argo given the violent schlock and infantile fanboy scrap they release every week of the year. But members of the film community like to think they work in a noble industry and Argo fits the bill perfectly. Plus the naive left like Argo because it demonstrates you can defeat Islamic terrorism without bullets. Yeah, right. At any rate the real interesting race Oscar night will be best director. As the various guild selections indicate, Spielberg appears vulnerable (somebody has to be responsible for its often turgid qualities). So I wouldn’t be surprised if they select Haneke for degree of difficulty. Ang Lee appears very much in the running, as well.

  161. Zach
    February 3, 2013

    @steve50, I don’t know what movie other people were watching, but while DDL is exquisite as Lincoln, it was an ensemble effort from start to finish. TLJ has to be the frontrunner in supporting after his SAG win, and deservedly. If not for Anne Hathaway, Sally Field would be claiming her third trophy as well, for haunting portrayal of the First Lady. And then you have James Spader, David Strathairn, John Hawkes, and Jackie Earle Haley among others providing sterling support in character turns. No, most of the characters don’t share substantial screentime with each other, but this is one superior ensemble.

    So..when’s the last time a movie that won PGA, DGA, and SAG lost the Oscar/wasn’t nominated for Director? Apollo 13? A similar WTF-is-this-winning-everything-like-SAG film.

    Now I’m glad Ben was snubbed. I’d rather he win Director and another film win Picture, but his direction was good, not brilliant, so at least if they give Argo Picture, they are still forced to pick another film for Director. And that will be exciting!

    When’s the last time a film won Best Picture without any of the top guild wins? Braveheart? Even that won WGA – over Apollo 13 and The Usual Suspects. Lincoln HAS to win WGA to stay in this race, but also because it truly is the best script.

    And since the PGA introduced the preferential ballot, when have they been wrong? Never.

  162. Roberto P.
    February 3, 2013

    Steven Spielberg hasn’t won a single Best Director award in all the awards season… Though, he’ll probably win the Oscar. This is the only REAL injustice about this season! For the first time in Oscar history, the director – or actor, lead or supporting, or writer – winning CC, GG, DGA and possibly BAFTA isn’t even nominated for Oscar. Which is very strange, and makes me think it was deliberate by the director branch to erase Spielberg’s competition in order to let him win…

  163. Tony
    February 3, 2013

    When a gifted actor like DDL has been in only 7 movies in the past 20 years, he damn well better be spectacular — he has so much time to prepare!

    Since 2006, Meryl has given us “A Prairie Home Companion,” “The Devil Wears Prada,” “Mamma Mia,” “Doubt,” “Julie and Julia,” “It’s Complicated,” “The Iron Lady,” and that’s just the good and/or successful stuff — with “Osage” coming later this year. The variety is jaw-dropping.

  164. mecid
    February 3, 2013

    Roberto P, he hasn’t won it means his direction is bad? Affleck won everything while similar film ZD30′s direction is far superior than it. Why you don’t consider that?

  165. helios
    February 3, 2013

    Is it wrong to secretly enjoy Affleck’s Oscar snub after all these wins? Ahem, my friend is asking.

  166. Mohammed
    February 3, 2013

    In the minds of Lincoln fans none of the awards that ARGO has won so far matter. The ONLY thing that’s important is WGA. Then LINCOLN will win BP! NOW, NOW, NOW!

    The only reason LINCOLN should win now is for the Academy to want to save Spielbergs face and honor.

    Haneke should invite Spielberg over one weekend to teach a little about making a complex movie about a profound moment in a nations story in a way that’s invigorating and shocking.

  167. Zach
    February 3, 2013

    Let’s get real here: Picture is always a crapshoot, a question of which one they liked best. But if Tony Kushner loses the Oscar, it will be the biggest injustice of the season. It’s not like Screenplay goes with Picture; Million Dollar Baby eked out a win but Sideways took Screenplay, while Rocky won only Picture, Director, and Editing. Can Argo please be no more than Rocky? Let Lincoln have Actor, S. Actor, Director, and Screenplay — not too different from Network, which won for 3 actors and Screenplay.

    I think it’s obvious Argo won’t be the “big” winner on Oscar night because it won’t win more than 3 to 4 Oscars (i.e. Sound Mixing or Editing), and Lincoln and Pi will probably win more. Lincoln wins 4, Pi wins up to 5 (Cinematography, Visual, Score, and the Sounds). Amour gets 1-3 depending on Screenplay and Actress. Skyfall gets 1-3 if it claims the Sounds. Anna Karenina wins 2. Les Mis wins 2 if it gets Sound Mixing. SLP and ZDT/Django win 1 at most.

  168. Chronos
    February 3, 2013

    Has a movie/director (read Lincoln) ever won after losing BFCA, PFA, DGA, Golden Globes and SAG? Extremely likely that Bafta will join that list.

    Even Driving Miss Daisy, Crash and Braveheart (or at least Mel Gibson) had at least won something.

  169. rufussondheim
    February 3, 2013

    Steve50, you’ve obviously been taking too much Lefteperol or some similar drug that causes psychotic episodes as a side effect. If you weren’t normally so agreeable, I’d have to tell those raging theater queens chasing you about your LuPone gambit :)

    I do have to disagree with you when you say you believe the gravy train for Argo is over and the race is between SLP and Lincoln. Early on, it looked like ZDT might be the overwhelming critical favorite this season, and for awhile it was. But then the torture controversy happened and then suddenly the remain critics awards suddeny started going to Argo, this was before the Academy snub.

    Now I have no clue what the directors were thinking. I still don’t think the snub was intentional, I just prefer to believe that the votes were very close, but either way his absence is of note.

    But is it significant? I’d argue not. In most years there is a huge dropoff of quality from the top film to the first film left off the ballots, we’ll call that the nunber 6 film. This year, that’s not the case. Any way you shake it, if you rank the nine films nominated for Best Pic, whatever film you put at #6 is going to be widely respected. Except for Les Miz, all 9 films have pretty universal critical acceptance.

    IN summation, there are usually only two or three films that are “BP material” but this year there are far more. I would wager that if we had this many films of high quality every year, and the academy kept the current process intact, that we’d see the BP winner not have a corresponding director more often.

    I still think Argo has a good enough critical reception to win. It is Academy friendly. It has good Box Office, it’s got a good pedigree, it’s sufficiently prestigious. But most of all it won’t be in the bottom tier of very many preferential ballots.

    I think it wins easily.

  170. SallyinChicago
    February 3, 2013

    @ Femme Fatale: Ditto me too.

  171. Mohammed
    February 3, 2013

    @TONY: For many and different reasons the women’s lineup is seldomly as good the men’s. I reckon some of it has to do with material available and longivity. There are less than a handful of women who can get great material after certain age. Case in point: Sally Field’s need to get an okay from DDL to be casted in Lincoln before Spielberg casted her.

    Streep isn’t on the same level as DDL truth be told. She’s great and all, but you don’t walk out from her films feeling overwhelmed of her talent. I don’t.

    I hope Hollywood changes and more women get greater roles for longer period of their careers. But as it is now, Streep winning is like Norway winning in Women’s Handball. Much of it can be attributed to the lack of competition.

  172. Robert A.
    February 3, 2013

    “It’s not better than Pi, it’s not better than ZD30, it’s not better than Beasts, it’s not better than Amour, it’s not better than The Master, it’s not better than Django….”

    Of course, the same can be said for Lincoln. (Okay, Lincoln is better than Django, I’ll give you that.)

    “There is too much shitting on other movies lately. I mean really immature and obnoxious comments.
    I read here every day, but have little interest in participating lately.”

    Miss you, Mattoc. But I know what you mean.

  173. SallyinChicago
    February 3, 2013

    The more I think about it — Argo is not a great movie, it’s not the BEST movie, but the subject (hostages in Iran) fits into the political culture of the Academy. Waving the American flag, American pride, and all.
    We could be looking at another “Traffic” type win.

  174. Mohammed
    February 3, 2013

    PS: Was Affleck channeling Chers Oscar speech with his line ” I don’t think this makes me a real director. But I think it means I’m on my way”?

  175. Nic V
    February 3, 2013

    This has got to be the most confusing awards season I’ve seen in years. You can almost feel the dislike of Spielberg as much as you feel the dislike for Meryl when she’s nominated. The “critics” who accuse everyone of hating Ben Affleck and Argo are really mistaken because even though those of us who have an attachment for Lincoln, Life of Pi, Amour, Beasts, or whatever have never claimed that Affleck shouldn’t have been considered. I don’t recall anyone who has championed another film saying that Affleck’s work wasn’t good. But the fact is that his work is ‘just good’.

    Most all of us have acknowledged that Kushner’s screenplay for Lincoln is far superior to the pedestrian screenplay for Argo. Yes pedestrian. Argo’s screenplay is tight and the film moves quickly but where’s the substance? Where is there any true character development? Arkin and Goodman are regulated to delivering one liners. Affleck is regulated to walking around looking like his mind is on overload. There really isn’t any dialogue that is earth shattering. The only character in the film that really creates any suspense is the young woman working in the Canadian Embassy and you wonder if she’s going to betray the Americans. The cinematography certainly doesn’t compare to Pi or Lincoln. The Art Direction is about as pedestrian as the screenplay. And for all the criticism I’ve leveled as pedestrian it works and you have a successful film. A good film but not a great film. I will give the William Goldberg props for editing because the truth of the matter is that had he not kept Argo fast and tight it would be a mess. That’s what truly saves Argo is the editing.

    What really is confusing is this simple fact. The directors branch of the Academy nominates the five directors. They didn’t nominate Affleck. Then the Director’s Guild turns around and gives him the Best Director of the year award. What did Adam Sandler vote for Affleck? I think that George Clooney has really tarnished his own reputation at this point. When I consider the directors who must be members of AMPAS coming to the conclusion that Argo’s direction didn’t deserve notice then I just scratch my head. Because honestly there really isn’t anything truly moving about Argo? And that doesn’t mean that I think Argo is a bad film because I don’t. I enjoyed it. I mean Ridley Scott made have fallen short with Prometheus but are the technical values of Argo better than Prometheus? Think about it Argo got nominated for Sound Editing and Sound Mixing. For what? For regulating the chanting of the crowds outside the embassy or for the sound of the jet taking off at the airport?

    Very confusing.

  176. February 3, 2013

    I’m so damn glad that Ben Affleck won the Best Director DGA last night! I sensed that he would, but it was shaky. I also hate how people’s ire for Argo is really on fire now and having the poor taste, literally of saying that it’s a weak film and not one of the best this year. I’m still amazed how it was edged out of the People’s Choice award at TIFF last year for SLP, but I got a conspiracy about that. The audience just loved the film and I have never, ever been at a TIFF film in the nearly ten years of a going, where the applause after the film was not only loud, but long, several minutes. I had to watch the movie for a second time recently to hear the last five minutes of the film where President Carter was speaking (I didn’t hear it the first time at TIFF).

    What I’m saying is that Argo is hitting an emotional target with people. I was a kid in ’79 with the Iran hostage situation, and even then, I knew it was a horrible political situation, and Argo today helped me better understand in.

    Also, at my blog where I support Argo, I said that this is the only film this year that makes ‘Hollywood the Hero’, and they are loving this narrative. Yes, Ben Affleck was not nominated for an Oscar, ok, we got that AMPAS, but he and Argo has won every precursor guild award leading up to the Oscars, and the DGA win solidifies Argo for the Best Picture. This doesn’t mean Lincoln sucks (it’s a fine film), but it’s not going to win. Every year we all bitch and whine about this film vs that film. This year it’s Lincoln vs Argo, and with Affleck and Bigelow out of the way, Spielberg could win the Best Director, but Argo is so totally going to win the Best Picture Oscar, especially if AMPAS wants to maintain some sort of dignity.

  177. Chronos
    February 3, 2013

    I’m going out on a ledge here, but maybe, just maybe, Argo could win because the Academy just thinks it’s a better movie. Not because they prefer it’s political subtext, not because they want to justify some snub, not because it will make a good “Affleck-comeback” story, but just because they like it more.

    Weird attitude, where some people think Lincoln is clearly better, so there must be some big complot theory if it doesn’t win. It can’t be because people think Argo is better since the Spielbergites don’t think it’s better and they think of themselves as connaisseurs, so it’s completely incomprehensible that someone else should feel differently.

  178. Zach
    February 3, 2013

    Best Pictures Since 1960 That Lost Screenplay (Winner in Parentheses):
    West Side Story (Judgment at Nuremberg)
    Lawrence of Arabia (To Kill a Mockingbird)
    My Fair Lady (Becket)
    The Sound of Music (Not even nominated!! Doctor Zhivago took Adapted, Darling original)
    Oliver! (The Lion in Winter)
    Rocky (Network)
    The Deer Hunter (Coming Home)
    Platoon (Hannah and Her Sisters)
    Unforgiven (The Crying Games)
    Braveheart (The Usual Suspects, not a Best Picture nominee; Sense and Sensibility took Adapted)
    The English Patient (Sling Blade, not a Best Picture nominee; Fargo took Original)
    Titanic (Not nominated! L.A. Confidential took Adapted, Good Will Hunting Original)
    Gladiator (Almost Famous, not a Best Picture nominee; Traffic took Adapted)
    Chicago (The Pianist)
    Million Dollar Baby (Sideways)
    The Artist (Midnight in Paris)

    People, that’s 16 times in 52 years! Nearly 1/3 of the time! Given how fucked up this year is, why wouldn’t Picture and Screenplay split? If only they had nominated Affleck and then they would have been content to give Argo Picture, Director, and Editing!

    But either way, Lincoln should win for Screenplay. It’s the Becket of that group. Some of the most beloved films in Academy history didn’t win for their screenplays (including Ben-Hur, which won in its 11 other categories), so I don’t see why Argo would be different–unless the voters are feeling like they have to justify its Best Picture win with a win in one substantial category.

    *Since 1960, the only movies to win Picture without Director OR Screenplay are GLADIATOR and CHICAGO. Will Argo be the third?*

    Note Wings, Grand Hotel, and Mutiny on the Bounty won Picture and nothing else. The Great Ziegfeld didn’t win Director or Screenplay, but Actress. Rebecca won Picture and Cinematography. This is the 1940s all over again with the preferential ballot.

  179. Dan
    February 3, 2013

    This is becoming one of the most boring, predictable Oscar seasons ever. Argo is going to take home the big prize sadly. I’ve never been less excited for the Oscars.

  180. Astarisborn
    February 3, 2013

    This is undoubtably one of the best years for great films. So much passion from so many on their thoughts, opinions and their favorite. This awards season is the melting pot of all that is grand. Somehow it’s vogue to respect and agree to disagree. I personally love that this year is not following the norm.

  181. Armando
    February 3, 2013

    “This is becoming one of the most boring, predictable Oscar seasons ever.”

    Every year someone comes up with this comment. It never fails, but I must say it took a while this season.

    Meanwhile, having lots of fun with the “psychotic meltdown” (as someone wrote) Lincoln/Spielberg fans are having.

  182. Christopher
    February 3, 2013

    This is insane. Argo was a good film, but definitely not the best of the year-Top Ten, but not even top five. I think the “sympathy” band wagon for Affleck accompanied by the networking by Clooney who I feel is getting people on board is going to help Argo beat out at least 3-4 pictures that are far superior. I am not Argo-bashing, I did like the film, it just isn’t one of the top 3 of the year. I would rather have seen Ang Lee win this.
    I have a feeling at some point there will be some backlash for the Affleck sympathy mongering-and I don’t think he’s doing himself any favors in the future by playing up the “Academy ignored me, poor me” angle. I think they will remember how this year went and how he handled it. Don’t see any nominations or wins in Afflecks future. This was Speilbergs hands down. (And I am not a fan-boy-I usually hate Speilberg movies.) But there is no denying that Lincoln was the film of the year on so many levels. Shame on you DGA.

  183. Bob Burns
    February 3, 2013

    Will Academy voters revolt against boredom?

  184. Immaletyoufinish
    February 3, 2013

    Quite easy to deny that Lincoln was the film of the year. There. I just did it.

    Don’t agree that it was that smart, layered and subtle. I’ve seen far better political movies (and TV-series for that matter). I don’t think it holds a candle to the aforementioned Becket.

  185. KT
    February 3, 2013

    I’ve said this before on Awards Daily: BEWARE David O. Russell for Best Director. ARGO is the Best Picture winner, done deal…as it was after the preferential-ballot PGA Awards. Best Director remains one of the closest races, WITHOUT A CLEAR FRONTRUNNER!!

    This is a weird year, when only 2 DGA nominees went on to be nominated for the Directing Oscar. DO NOT necessarily think this directing race is just between those two DGA nominees Ang Lee and Steven Spielberg. It’s NOT!! They were not the two directors who swept the critics and Globes (Bigelow and Affleck)…this prize is up for the grabbing, and I have a sneaking suspicion that person will be David O. Russell:

    • He has huge respect from actors, having directed 7 acting nominees in his last two films. He WILL earn the Acting Branch majority vote with Affleck out of the picture.
    • He has been directing films for over a decade, with some standout work. Arguably some of that work may exceed Silver Linings–but when does a director EVER win for his or her BEST WORK?? Silver Linings is not arguably a WELL-DIRECTED MOVIE. It is undeniable that Russell is a very good director, and this could be the chance to honor him.
    • He has the narrative that he wrote and directed this particular film for his son. This narrative has been everywhere: Jennifer Lawrence repeated it when she won the SAG. The Weinstein Co publicity knows this will get him votes in a close race.
    • He has NEVER WON an Oscar before, unlike Lee and Spielberg. Does Spielberg get a third over Russell?? I have trouble seeing this, since I know how stingy the Academy is. Haneke is already getting foreign film and original screenplay (very likely). Zeitlin is just happy to be there. That leaves Russell and his film—WHERE CAN VOTERS AWARD SILVER LININGS??? Lincoln is winning Best Actor. I’m still not convinced Jennifer Lawrence will win Best Actress or De Niro can win Supporting Actor after 20 years of subpar, disappointing work…BUT Best Director is SURELY a place where this film, and a notable director working today, can win votes and get its due.
    • AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST, may I remind you who is behind Silver Linings. Yup, Mr. Harvey. He is not going home empty-handed this year. AND imagine the horror in the auditorium if Russell takes Director, and EVERYONE is fearing that Silver Linings/Harvey train can upset Best Picture AGAIN (which it won’t).

    I really think Russell can win this. And it doesn’t mean anything that he didn’t get the DGA nomination. He is in the race—just be prepared before his win almost assuredly shocks and infuriates you on Oscar night.

  186. Zach
    February 3, 2013

    The Color Purple >>>>> Apollo 13 > Braveheart >> Argo >>> SLP >> Out of Africa

  187. Ethan
    February 3, 2013

    Ben Affleck can win as many precursor directing awards as he wants with this made-for-tv movie, but he will never get the coveted directing Oscar for it. And that, my friend, is a comforting thought :)

  188. James
    February 3, 2013

    Argo’s a good movie, but right now it’s officially the most over-awarded movie of the year.

    February 3, 2013

    HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE ROUND OF APPLAUSE to the (oh let’s say a median of) early 40 somethings on this site who are so quick to put down someone who is 26 and has a show on one of the biggest cable networks on the planet. ANNNNND also writes, directs and stars in it.

    Ummm boybands never wrote their own songs let alone had any input…. wakey wakey PAULH

    Whether GIRLS is anyones thing or not, I think Lena Dunham has clearly showcased that be it in writing , acting or directing (or all three) she will play a rold in the next generation of entertainment.

  190. Britt
    February 3, 2013

    Affleck never had a “poor me” attitude, it was in fact his peers, that thought he was robbed. He has made 3 solid movies in a row, Argo is a damn good movie – and yes, some might say they think it is better than Lincoln. But best picture is a matter of opinion, and this year has been an amazing year for movies. Not just 1 or 2, but every single movie nominated i have watched and enjoyed and would be okay with winning best picture.Ben Affleck has come a long way from being the proprietor of the fashionable male, im thrilled that he won.

  191. rufussondheim
    February 3, 2013

    I think it’s funny that a supporter of Lincoln is claiming that Argo is without substance or character development. As a person who likes substance and character development, I think Argo has both in spades over Lincoln. What Lincoln has is a top-notch subject, great technical aspects and some great performances and sparkling dialogue. But there’s really no character development at all. Anytime the script comes close to there being some character develpment, Spielberg quickly changes focus in favor of some other aspect. As for substance, there’s nothing here that can’t be gotten from a history book. Other than the ability to see what interior lighting for the rich was like in 1860′s, there’s not much to the film that can be gotten elsewhere.

    Argo, on the other hand, has a great central character in Tony Mendez. We see his life in full, how he loves his job, and the toll it takes on him. It’s a far more interesting portrayal of a person than Lincoln. As for substance, Argo does a nice job of dissecting the disastrous side effects of our imperialistic foreign policy. And it shows how those negative side effects ironically provide us Americans to cheer heroism and feel patriotic, all the while not caring about how our actions affect those in other countries. I find this to be a highly substantive film, and it does it in such a subtle way, most people have no clue what they are watching, proving Affleck’s and Terrio’s points along the way.

    The more I think about Argo, the more brilliant I think it is. Even the close calls I hated at first are starting to make sense thematically. You can almost hear Affleck thinking “Let’s Hollywood it up!” The government “Hollywood’s it up” for us all time to make it palatable for the American population (just look at the Bush Administration and the run up and immediate aftermath of the Iraq invasion for an example.)

    Argo is a film of substance and character development and a very worthy film to win Best Picture.

  192. g
    February 3, 2013

    Yay! Argo, and I’m so happy for searching for sugarman!

  193. filmboymichael
    February 3, 2013

    @daveinprogress – that is the first thing that popped in my head when I read that quote: “did he just borrow a quote from….CHER?!”

    love it.

  194. Lisa
    February 3, 2013

    Is Ryan Adams the moderator here? If so he should grow up. Get over it. “The trick is not minding” Say that to yourself 50 times a day dude.
    I agree with: “The Academy made itself look awful this year. No matter what happens; ARGO cleaning up will have done serious damage to any other film.
    Come Oscar night if another film wins it’s because the Academy wanted to give a consolation prize. It’s like awarding the runner up because the real winner was caught in a traffic jam”.
    Stop with your bogus “Argo winning awards is a pity vote” crap. All these nominations came out BEFORE the Oscars snub was announced. At lease two awards were given before the Oscars were announced. You would “think” the DGA would want to keep its predictor of the Oscar award status going: they felt strongly enough to let it go.

  195. February 3, 2013

    I’m happy that you’re so comforted Ethan that Affleck will not get an Oscar for what you foolishly refer to Argo as ‘made for tv’. He won the DGA, so it’s all good son.

    You’re pathetic.

  196. James
    February 3, 2013

    This year we had many good movies, some nominated, some not nominated. Good for us, no doubt. The thing is: we’re talking best, not good nor even very good. There was a time when earning a nomination was considered as a huge achievement since it meant the movie had struck a chord and distinguished itself. The best motion picture-to be movie is something different: it should be MEMORABLE, since it’d go down in history. Irrespective of whether it’s the movie people personally loved/enjoyed, etc most.

  197. Pierre de Plume
    February 3, 2013

    KT — you make several good points about David O. Russell’s position in this race. I’m sure many people are working under the assumption that, because Affleck is “out of the way” in the director category, that means Spielberg is the most likely recipient. But Russell’s fingerprints are all over his film because of his integral role in the writing and also his current (and past) successes with actors, critics and public reception. Plus – notably – you raise the Harvey factor. I’m still not convinced, but your “beware” is well taken.

    Given how fucked up this year is, why wouldn’t Picture and Screenplay split? . . . so I don’t see why Argo would be different–unless the voters are feeling like they have to justify its Best Picture win with a win in one substantial category.

    Zach — Therein lies the answer: Can Argo take best picture winning 1, or maybe 2, major awards? It’s best chance lies in the editing category, but is that enough to justify best picture? I doubt it. Seems to me there will have to be a bandwagon effect in the adapted screenplay category to make it a viable choice for top prize. To me, that’s the question of the moment, and only the can provide the all-important clue at this point.

  198. Zach
    February 3, 2013

    Yeah, my mom just made a great point when I told her last night’s winners: “How can they sit there and fill out their ballots and pick Argo for Best Picture when they see it’s not getting anything else?”

    And so she’s picking Arkin to win Supporting. (I’m laughing as I type this. She has not seen Argo.)

    Well, stranger things have happened.

    If Argo wins only Picture and Editing, and even a Sound award, it does make you wonder whether Lincoln will take all the other top awards. They could sit down and say, “Well, I would have voted for Affleck had he been nominated, but I’m left with no choice other than to pick Spielberg or Lee. I know Lincoln has the better script and great performances, and I think Pi should get everything technical. But Argo is still my favorite film of the year, and had Ben been nominated, I would have at least given it Picture, Editing, and Director too.”

    Argo has swept the precursors, though. That suggests that it didn’t just win PGA because of the idiosyncrasies of the preferential ballot, but that Argo legitimately leading the votes, if not winning over a majority of voters, in every guild.

    And with that in mind, it would be odd for there to be such a mismatch between the Academy and all of the guilds for Argo not to win Picture.

    Still, two SAG Ensemble wins make me shake my head in disbelief: Argo and Apollo 13 (three if you include The Birdcage, but great cast). What does that say?

  199. Joao Mattos
    February 3, 2013

    WTF!?!??!!?!?!? I just read here about Affleck victory at the DGA. I was skeptical about “Argo” at the Oscar, even with all the love from other precursors. Now, no doubt about it:. it will BP at the Academy Awards

  200. steve50
    February 3, 2013

    “…usually only two or three films that are “BP material” but this year there are far more.”

    That is exactly why I count nobody out at this point, rufus. Ballots arrive with the voters in 5 days, then they have about 10 days to submit them. That is an incredibly long time in a high profile campaign like this, loaded with guild awards. Good publicity, bad publicity, it won cinematography at ASC, can’t believe it didn’t take the Scripters. All this adds up.

    Argo may well be the ideal BP choice (I called it the French Connection back in the fall), but it will be tough without a director nomination, let alone a win.

    The likely will be a split this year, but between whom? Only Disney or Weinstein can prevent that, but are either capable? Disney has the right product and TWC has the right team, but each is weak in the opposite camp.

  201. britt
    February 3, 2013

    People can hate on Argo all they want, but i remember all the buzz when the movie first did festival circuits – there was talk about how it could be best picture there. Argo got standing ovations – yada, yada, yada. Then it actually starts to win awards, and people claim that they are pity awards. It’s sad, i just think that its that good of a movie.

  202. RA
    February 3, 2013

    Well, we can’t say that this was a surprise. But wow! The BD race at the Oscars this year is definitely now the most exciting category (of course, other than Best Picture). Now it’s on to WGA. Will they, too, fall for Argo? If so… this awards season is officially a shame. That would be the time to SERIOUSLY consider every award from PGA to WGA as a sympathy prize. No way in hell does a film like Argo deserve to sweep the guilds. Kushner D-E-S-E-R-V-E-S a win for adapted screenplay. If WGA and AMPAS chooses Terrio over Kushner for the sake of “following the crowd” or trying to justify Argo as the Best Picture… oh no… that would be a sham. But if Argo does end up winning it all… one can only say congratulations. I’m still rooting for Life of Pi and Lincoln to the very end! BAFTA… please revive the awards season!

  203. embArgo
    February 3, 2013

    Here’s a couple of words for all the Affleck crockumentary lovers:

    Ken Taylor.

  204. emBargo
    February 3, 2013

    Here are two more:

    John Sheardown

  205. J. Cochrane
    February 3, 2013

    The most likely scenerios for Picture/Director that I see happening are: ARGO/Spielberg, LINCOLN/Spielberg, ARGO/Haneke (my personal choice for Best Director).

    Even if ARGO does hang on to win Best Picture, it will be difficult for the Academy not to acknowledge Spielberg’s achievement with LINCOLN – which is impressive on a number of fronts, and one of his best.

    And Spielberg is a great director IMO. (My wife and I have debated this a few times.) Yes, his sentimentality and playing to the audience work against him (like Chaplin), but look at his track record. Who else since Hitchcock has burrowed into the popular subconscious like this? Sure, there are other directors I prefer (Kubrick, Scorsese, etc.), but Spielberg is likeable, immensely talented and knowledgable. I am always fascinating to hear him talk about film technique and history. If you don’t like Spielberg’s style, its really more of a comement about your personality – same as people who don’t care for Ford or Chaplin.

    Classic movies can be great art or great entertainment – or sometimes a combination of the two. There is no shame in great entertainment (though I believe Best Pictures should be ambitious and a shining example of what film can be). Spielberg has enough films in his canon to prove himself a worthy artist. Where the backlash largely comes from is a resentment for his power and success with a mass audience, which is too bad. LINCOLN is not my choice for Best Picture (I prefer AMOUR or LIFE OF PI), but it would be an excellent pick. It will be interesting to see what happens…

  206. PaulH
    February 3, 2013

    All this hubbub over Argo cause 370 members of the Academy’s directors branch told Affleck, in effect, stick to acting, you’re not good enough to be one of us. I’d be royally embarrassed if I were one of those 370…

  207. Phil Boroff
    February 3, 2013

    Let’s face it: Argo is a very good movie, but not a great one. The bottom line (pun intended): Argo makes heroes of Hollywood moviemakers — even fake ones — and Hollywood loves nothing more than kissing it’s own ass.

  208. Film Fatale
    February 3, 2013


    You are ether high, on meds or need to go back and do your homework — Streep “isn’t on the same level” as Day-Lewis and her talent is not “overwhelming” eh? Flat out most inaccurate and misguided comment I have ever read on Awards Daily–and that is saying something.

    You must be very young so I would suggest you start by watching Sophie’s Choice followed by her truck scene in The Brodges of Madison County and EVERY OTHER THING SHE HAS EVER DONE — frankly, Day-Lewis needs to catch up to her in the department of producing emotion to complement his technical precision.

    Streep is an immortal actress and there’s a reason why actors all over the world have revered her as the queen for 35 years.

    Sorry, game over.

  209. Johnoliver46
    February 3, 2013

    All this means for me is an exciting Oscar night. However, if Spielberg and Kushner win, along with DDL, then it’s a sweep for Lincoln.

  210. Tony
    February 3, 2013

    Amen, Film Fatale. Drama, comedy, romance, singing, she’s done it all with emotions and accents a-plenty. (Nice little bit as a rabbi in “Angels in America,” too.)

    There’s a clip on Youtube by Mo Rocco called “Streeple,” populated entirely by Streep characters (through the end of 2009). It’s terrific.

  211. February 3, 2013

    “WTF!?!??!!?!?!? I just read here about Affleck victory at the DGA. I was skeptical about “Argo” at the Oscar, even with all the love from other precursors. Now, no doubt about it:. it will BP at the Academy Awards”


    I told you, fella. :)

  212. Sammy
    February 4, 2013

    Argo is a well crafted film but it would be the weakest BP winner since Crash.

  213. Sammy
    February 4, 2013

    ARGO/Spielberg combination is highly unlikely. If Spielberg wins Lincoln would win. If ARGO wins then it would be Haneke.

  214. Sammy
    February 4, 2013

    @Pierre – I agree. Adapted screenplay category is going to tell us the true nature of the race. Adapted screenplay win for Argo is a must for BP chance.

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