Nominees talk about crunched prod'n skeds

HOLLYWOOD — The Directors Guild fete for TV movie nominees on Feb. 18 struck an understandably sober tone, given the war themes of several nominees’ telepics and escalating tensions with Iraq.

“With bombing seeming to loom more closely every day, perhaps we should have called this ‘Live From Baghdad: The Prequel,’ ” said Mick Jackson of his HBO telepic on coverage of the ’91 Gulf War.

Nominees admitted the crunched telepic production schedules are daunting, with mere 19-day shoots for Julie Dash’s “The Rosa Parks Story” and Howard Deutch’s “Gleason.” “There’s no time to second-guess and sometimes, that really works in your favor,” Deutch said.

Evans Frankenheimer, widow of John Frankenheimer, who was nominated for “Path to War,” said her husband favored telepics for the freedom they gave to tackle subjects he could not elsewhere.

Richard Loncraine, tapped for “The Gathering Storm,” could not attend due to a European shooting commitment.

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