Brow Beat

Directors Guild of America Nominations Suggest You Shouldn’t Bet Against ​The Big Short

The Big Short.

Paramount Pictures

The Directors Guild of America Award nominations were announced on Tuesday, and it’s good news for Alejandro González Iñárritu and Tom McCarthy, two guys who have had no shortage of good news as the awards season has chugged along. It’s even better news for Adam McKay, whose The Big Short has only recently surged in awards season buzz, and is the biggest surprise here. (Todd Haynes’ Carol seemed much more likely.

If you’re planning to place your bets on the Best Picture Oscar winner this year, look no further than these nominations. Up to this point, speculation around Oscar season has hinged on nominations and awards from critics, the press, and individual branches of the academy’s voting body. But out of all of those accolades, the one that has proven in the past to be the best indicator of which film academy voters are leaning toward is the DGA Award.


Essentially, the odds are in favor of you correctly guessing the eventual Best Picture winner if you choose one person among the five who are nominated here. Your odds will be even greater if you wait to find out the winner of the DGA Award, which will be announced Feb. 6, a couple of weeks before the Academy Awards are presented. More often than not in the last 15 years, whoever takes home the award from the DGA sees their film win big come Oscar night—even if they don’t go on to win, or even get nominated (as was the case for Ben Affleck and Argo a few years ago) for the academy’s Best Director prize. So will Spotlight take the big prize as long ago predicted? (And will I eat crow?) Is Iñárritu going to have earned back-to-back Best Picture winners? We shall see, but odds are good for any of these guys. Check out the full list of DGA nominations below.


Outstanding Achievement in Feature Film

Alejandro González Iñárritu, The Revenant

Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

Adam McKay, The Big Short

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Ridley Scott, The Martian

Best First-Time Feature Film Director

Fernando Coimbra, A Wolf at the Door

Joel Edgerton, The Gift

Alex Garland, Ex Machina

Marielle Heller, The Diary of a Teenage Girl

László Nemes, Son of Saul

Read more in Slate about the 2016 Oscars.