The nominations for the 66th annual Directors Guild of America Awards are in and three filmmakers find themselves in the running for the first time.
As for the others...
Martin Scorsese notched his 11th nomination and fourth in three years, today's coming for his nearly three-hour indictment of the hedonistic lifestyle enjoyed by the rich and greedy in The Wolf of Wall Street.
The New York native, whose first-ever nomination came for Taxi Driver in 1977, finally won in 2007 for The Departed, for which he went on to win the Oscar. He also picked up a statue in 2011 for directing the premiere episode of HBO's Boardwalk Empire and was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003.
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American Hustle director David O. Russell received his second nomination, his first coming for The Fighter in 2011.
Rounding out the field are Steve McQueen for 12 Years a Slave, Paul Greengrass for Captain Phillips and Alfonso Cuarón for Gravity, all three of them first-time DGA nominees.
If McQueen wins, he would be the first black filmmaker to do so. John Singleton, for Boyz in the Hood in 1991, and Lee Daniels, for Precious in 2009, remain the only other African-American nominees in the awards' 66-year history.
The winner of the DGA Award has gone on to win the Academy Award 58 times in the last 65 years—but one of those exceptions notably came last year, when Ben Affleck was the DGA favorite for Argo and then wasn't even nominated for the Oscar.
While it doesn't seem as if Scorsese would be the wild card come Oscar time (the nominations will be announced Jan. 16), he's the only one of these five who isn't nominated for the Golden Globe, the fifth slot instead belonging to Alexander Payne for Nebraska.
McQueen and Russell, whose films lead all comers with seven Globe nominations apiece, and Cuarón, whose groundbreaking Gravity is a technical marvel, seem like the true locks for Oscar nods at this point—but we shall see what happens.
Jane Lynch will host the 2014 DGA Awards at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in L.A. on Jan. 25.
Presumably those in attendance will be better behaved than one critic in the crowd last night at the New York Film Critics Circle Awards banquet, where McQueen accepted the best director prize.
"You're an embarrassing doorman and garbage man," shouted CityArts editor Armond White, who called 12 Years a Slave "torture porn" in his pan of the otherwise critically lauded film, as McQueen took the podium, according to Variety. "F--k you, kiss my ass."