The Directors Guild of America chose its top five directors of the year: anointing Alejandro G. Inarritu (The Revenant), Tom McCarthy (Spotlight), Adam McKay (The Big Short), George Miller (Mad Max: Fury Road), and Ridley Scott (The Martian). Steven Spielberg (Bridge of Spies) and Todd Haynes (Carol) were among those left off the list.
The DGAs have a strong track record of anticipating how the Academy will vote in the Best Director category. In the past 10 years, they’ve predicted the Oscar winner 90 percent of the time, a success rate that drops only slightly to 80 percent when examining the past 20 years.
The nominations are a big deal for McCarthy, McKay, and Miller, who are all receiving their first nominations. Scott has been nominated three previous times for a DGA but has never won.
Inarritu, last year’s winner for Birdman, nabbed his fourth nomination, including one for a commercial he did for Proctor & Gamble.
Last year, the DGA chose Wes Anderson (The Grand Budapest Hotel), Clint Eastwood (American Sniper), Inarritu (Birdman), Richard Linklater (Boyhood), and Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game).
Their nominees differed by only one with the Academy, which opted for Bennett Miller (Foxcatcher) over Eastwood.
For the first tme, the DGA also recognized first-time filmmakers with a new award honoring their work. Those nominees include Fernando Coimbra (A Wolf at the Door), Joel Edgerton (The Gift), Alex Garland (Ex Machina), Marielle Heller (The Diary of a Teenage Girl) and Laszlo Nemes (Son of Saul).
Winners will be announced on February 6.