DGA: Alfonso Cuaron Wins Top Prize for ‘Gravity’

DGA: Alfonso Cuaron Wins Top Prize

Alfonso Cuaron has won the Directors Guild of America award for feature film for his high-tech space thriller  “Gravity.”

The Mexico native won over Paul Greengrass (“Captain Phillips”), Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”), David O. Russell (“American Hustle”) and Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wall Street”).

“This is truly an honor and I’m humbled by it,” Cuaron said in his acceptance speech. “I still have this teen crush on other directors.”

Cuaron, who spent five years developing “Gravity,” noted that photos from space show that the Earth is “absolutely beautiful” but do not depict the human experience.

“It’s a bizarre experiment of nature, that is the human experience,” he noted. “And it’s what we as directors try to sort out as filmmakers.”

The winner was announced by last year’s winner Ben Affleck at the conclusion of the 66th DGA Awards ceremonies at the Century Plaza Hotel, based on voting by the 15,000 DGA members.

“Breaking Bad,” “30 Rock” and “Behind the Candelabra” won the major TV awards and “The Square” took the feature documentary award.

The DGA win comes a week after “Gravity” and “12 Years a Slave” tied for the top award by the Producers Guild of America while “American Hustle” won the SAG cast ensemble award. Two weeks ago, “12 Years a Slave” won the Golden Globe for best drama and “American Hustle” won for best comedy.

Affleck won the DGA award last year for “Argo,” becoming only the seventh DGA winner not to also receive a directing Oscar in the 65 years of the DGA Awards. The DGA and Oscar had matched for the nine previous years, last diverging in 2003 when it selected Rob Marshall for “Chicago” and the Oscar went to Roman Polanski for “The Pianist.”

Cuaron, Greengrass, McQueen and Russell have been nominated for the directing Oscar along with Alexander Payne for “Nebraska.” Directors make up about 6% of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences with 377 directors out of 6,028 members.

Cuaron’s 91-minute film has overperformed at the box office with $678 million worldwide for Warner Bros. He co-wrote the script with his son Jonas Cuaron as an exploration of  “adversity and the possibility of rebirth as an outcome of adversities.”

“Gravity” was Cuaron’s first film since 2006’s “Children of Men.” He’s been nominated for six Academy Awards: original screenplay for “Y Tu Mamá También,” adapted screenplay and editing for “Children of Men” and Best Picture, director and editor for “Gravity.”

Series creator Vince Gilligan won the award for TV series for the final “Breaking Bad” episode. The “Felina” episode won over Bryan Cranston for the “Blood Money” segment of “Breaking Bad” segment, David Fincher, receiving his sixth DGA nomination for directing “Chapter 1″ of “House of Cards,”  Lesli Linka Glatter for “Homeland” and David Nutter for “Game of Thrones.”

“I am blown away,” Gilligan said. “I am in the company of betters.”

Steven Soderbergh won the award for TV miniseries for HBO’s “Behind the Candelabra.” He won over “The Sound of Music Live!,” “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight,” “Phil Spector,” and  “Killing Kennedy.” It was the first DGA win for Soderbergh, who was nommed twice in 2000 for “Erin Brockovich” and “Traffic.”

The award came a few minutes after DGA president Paris Barclay made a surprise presentation to Soderbergh with the Robert B. Aldrich award for service to the guild. Soderbergh told the crowd that he initially did not want to join the DGA.

“Behind the Candelabra” won 11 Emmys and two Golden Globes along with the SAG and PGA awards.

Jehane Noujaim won the documentary award for “The Square,” the Oscar-nominated story of the Egyptian revolution of 2011 from its roots in Tahrir Square. “The Square topped “Cutie and the Boxer,” “The Act of Killing,” “Stories We Tell” and “The Crash Reel.” It’s the second DGA win for Noujaim, who won in 2001 with Chris Hegedus for “Startup.com.”

”This film is the most deeply personal film I ever made, watching my country change, she said in her acceptance. “It redefined my understanding of what was possible.”

Beth McCarthy-Miller won the award for TV comedy series for the “Hogcock/Last Lunch” episode of “30 Rock.” The episode topped two segments of “Modern Family” — one directed by Cranston — and two of “The Big Bang Theory.”

It was the third DGA award for McCarthy-Miller, who won twice previously for musical variety shows.

Amy Schatz won her fifth DGA award for children’s programming for HBO’s “An Apology to Elephants.”

Neil P. DeGroot took the reality award for “The Lost Coast” segment of TNT’s “72 Hours,” his second trophy in the category.

Don Roy King won the regularly scheduled variety award for “Saturday Night Live with host Justin Timberlake.” It was his first win after being nominated seven times for “SNL.”

Glen Weis won his fifth DGA award for the 67th Tony Awards in the specials – variety/talk/news/sports category.

Complete list of winners:

Feature Film:

WINNER: Alfonso Cuaron (“Gravity”)
Paul Greengrass (“Captain Phillips”)
Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”)
David O. Russell (“American Hustle”)
Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wall Street”)

Documentary Feature:

Zachary Heinzerling (“Cutie and the Boxer”)
WINNER: Jehane Noujaim (“The Square”)
Joshua Oppenheimer (“The Act of Killing”)
Sarah Polley (“Stories We Tell”)
Lucy Walker (“The Crash Reel”)

Comedy Series:

Mark Cendrowski, “The Big Bang Theory” (for the episode “The Hofstadter Insufficiency”)
Bryan Cranston, “Modern Family” (for the episode “The Old Man & the Tree)
Gail Mancuso, “Modern Family” (for the episode “My Hero”)
WINNER: Beth McCarthy-Miller, “30 Rock” (for the episode “Hogcock/Last Lunch”)
Anthony Rich, “The Big Bang Theory” (for the episode “The Love Spell Potential”)

Reality Program:

Matthew Bartley, “The Biggest Loser”
WINNER: Neil P. DeGroot, “72 Hours”
Paul Starkman, “Top Chef”
J. Rupert Thompson, “The Hero”
Bertram van Munster, “The Amazing Race”

Variety/Talk/News/Sports — Specials:

Louis C.K., “Louis C.K.: Oh My God”
Joel Gallen, “2013 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony”
Louis J. Horvitz, “The 55th Annual Grammy Awards”
Don Mischer, “The 85th Annual Academy Awards”
WINNER: Glenn Weiss, “The 67th Annual Tony Awards”

Children’s Programs:

Stephen Herek, “Jinxed”
Jeffrey Hornaday, “Teen Beach Movie”
Jonathan Judge, “Swindle”
WINNER: Amy Schatz, “An Apology to Elephants”
Adam Weissman, “A.N.T. Farm”


Dave Diomedi, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”
Andy Fisher, “Jimmy Kimmel Live”
Jim Hoskinson, “The Colbert Report”
WINNER: Don Roy King, “SNL”
Chuck O’Neil, “The Daily Show”

Movie for TV and Miniseries:

Stephen Frears, “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight”
David Mamet, “Phil Spector”
Beth McCarthy-Miller & Rob Ashford (“The Sound of Music Live!”)
Nelson McCormick, “Killing Kennedy”
WINNER: Steven Soderbergh, “Behind the Candelabra”

Dramatic Series:

Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad” (for the episode “Blood Money”)
David Fincher, “House of Cards” (for the episode “Chapter 1”)
WINNER: Vince Gilligan, “Breaking Bad” (for the episode “Felina”)
Lesli Linka Glatter, “Homeland” (for the episode “The Star”)
David Nutter, “Game of Thrones” (for the episode “The Rain of Castamere”)


Fredrik Bond, “Voyage” for Heineken and “From the Future” for Johnny Walker
John X. Carey, “Real Beauty Sketches” for Dove
WINNER: Martin de Thurah, “The Man Who Couldn’t Slow Down” for Hennessy and “Human Race” for Acura
Matthijs van Heijningen, “Perfect Day” for Playstation and “48” for Verizon”
Noam Murro, “Basketball” for Guinness and “Kids” for DIRECTV and “Mask” for VW

Franklin J Schaffner Achievement Award: Vincent DeDario (presented by Keith Jackson)

Robert B. Aldrich Award for Service: Steven Soderbergh

Frank Capra Achievement Award: Lee Blaine

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  1. seo 價格 says:

    Excellent happy analytical eyesight designed for detail and may foresee troubles prior to they will occur.

  2. John says:

    Rick Scholten: “Cuz dat be raycissssssss.” I mean, a person who would write this is a complete racist POS but doesn’t realize it. You literally can’t talk to these people. They are so ignorant, so moronic, that any kind of engagement is impossible. One can only hope they stay over at Drudge among their own kind.

  3. John says:

    Oh, I see the racists are here from Drudge. Okay, got it.

  4. Henry Camphouse says:

    Just a warning- the fearful, racist comments here are because the story is posted on Drudge Report under a subtly racist headline. A link to Drudge brings out the racist trolls in the comment section.

  5. MartyS says:

    Well earned award. Gravity was incredible.

  6. Jay's Carney says:

    Good! Errrr-um-a…I mean haters!

  7. Racists! The “Bad White Man” film didn’t win!!

    • John says:

      Who exactly are you talking to? (Or mocking, actually?)

      • John says:

        God, that’s incredibly insightful. He’ll have to point to a few of these “self-loathing white liberals” who have called the DGA membership racists for not voting for Steve McQueen. There must be oodles of them, because certainly Joe Truthmeister is a brilliant sage.

      • Jay's Carney says:

        I think he is mocking self loathing white liberals.

  8. carlb says:

    good. i am tired of this guilt vote we get when we get a movie like the butler. gravity by far was the best movie out there from the camera work to seeing bullock in her underwear in what looked like a meat locker freezer. i can see it winning maybe four oscars! hear that pampered clowns!

  9. Tim2999 says:

    How is this possible? Gravity is a science (and astronaut) ignorant, self important, impossible to happen scenario “movie” while 12 Years a Slave is the best film ever on the subject. Nonsense.

  10. Victoria says:

    Sarah Polley should have won for Best Documentary. Very, very complex story told in an intelligent and gripping way.

  11. kmrod says:

    good! gravity was awesome while slave was a white-guilt, tug-at-your-heartstrings piece hack piece designed to rally blacks and “put whitey in his place”.

    • John says:

      “Rally blacks” to do what, exactly? Could you elaborate on this secret agenda of Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, Bill Pohlad, Arnon Milchan, Fox Searchlight? I’m curious to know what they were covertly up to, since you seem to have the answers.

      • John says:

        to kmrod

        I doubt you could, either, boss. Watch out for those rallying blacks, I heard they bite. Look out, they’re behind you! Too bad whitey is now in his place — otherwise you might be saved!

      • kmrod says:

        if you didn’t get it from my post, i doubt i could explain it to you.

  12. Alice says:

    Gravity was a milestone in cinematography history. It will be studied at Film&Arts Universities (specially the nearly 15 minutes opening scene…) We are not talking about special effects here. It is about the vision of a man. And how he could translate such different, organic and universal emotions to the audiences ” at “the movie theaters. That´s what movies are for.. isn’t it? Cuaron is a genius. (You could add Lubezki to a short list of people that have been doing truly outstanding things this last years) I feel it is just not right that a movie that does´t have the best director ( add: editing/cinematography/sound/FX/and so on) could ever win as best picture. Its incongruent.
    I wish he wins. He really, truly deserves it.

  13. TheCommentator says:

    Gravity is a fantastic film that pulls you emotionally into what the characters are experiencing – because it is different and new.

    The director did a wonderful job to make that happen. It is why we go to the movies.

    • BobStrebs says:

      Gravity is “…different and new.” Good point
      Since most of us are languishing as economic slaves, Slave hits too close to home with a notion of emotional and psychological familiarity.

  14. Defiant says:

    “Gravity” beat “Slave” because WE’RE ALL SICK AND TIRED OF HEARING ABOUT IT! We get it! You’re ancestors were slaves. I didn’t own any…and neither did my grandfather. So…get a job…stop whining…and MOVE ON.

    • John says:

      There is so much stupidity in your post I don’t even know where to start. But a question: who exactly are you speaking for? Who is this “we’re all”?

      Whatever. Your anger over black people, by the way, has nothing to do with what director won a DGA award, or with movies in general. Somebody winning an award over another somebody is just a trigger for you. Could’ve been something else — a football game, a TV commercial, an article on the Internet.

      • John says:

        to Ray:

        Defiant doesn’t have a point. Defiant is kind of a moron, actually. I’m not sure what “beaten to death” means. Could you quantify that for me? Beaten to death like, say, WWII? 60s counter-culture? Eisenhower’s America? Historical Topic X? How long a period of time or how much discussion achieves this beaten-to-deathness? I’m interested. Nevertheless, always good to hear folks chime in with their opinions about others: slavery is a “scapegoat”! “Lack of motivation” is the problem! Great, thanks! You solved it all! (Oh, and “certain community”– you mean black people, right? You should just spit it out, man.) Moreover, Defiant (and you, presumably) has a larger problem: he can’t believe that anybody white might actually, you know, LIKE the movie, or be moved by it, or respect the filmmaking and want to vote for its director. So he’s not even a mere racist, he’s beyond that; he’s more just a general misanthrope.

      • Ray says:

        Sorry John, but Defiant has a point. It is certainly a subject that has been beaten to death. And consistently used as a scapegoat for lack of motivation, among other things in a certain community.

      • John says:

        Funny, I don’t recall anybody rioting, or even threatening to riot, over the DGA awards. Or any awards, for that matter, ever. But please keep unwittingly telling the world what you really feel, it’s useful.

        One guy wins an award for a movie. Four other guys don’t, one of them’s black. The most inconsequential event in history — a MOVIE AWARD. You alone make it a racial thing. But have a nice day anyway. I’m happy your guy won.

    • Brian Norman says:

      Boy ain’t that the truth. Great reply. I won’t be seeing either movie, but I agree with every word you’ve said.

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