DGA Announces Five Nominees for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 1998

DGA Awards

January 25, 1999

The Directors Guild of America today announced the five nominees for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 1998. The announcement was made by director James Cameron, last year’s DGA Award winner for Titanic, along with DGA First Vice President Martha Coolidge and Awards Committee Chairperson Howard Storm. The winner will be announced at the 51st Annual DGA Awards Dinner on Saturday, March 6, 1999 at the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.

The nominees for the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 1998 are (in alphabetical order):

Life is Beautiful
Production Manager: Attilio Viti
Assistant Director: Gianni Arduini
Shakespeare in Love
Unit Production Manager: Rachel Neale
First Assistant Director: Deborah Saban
Second Assistant Director: Olivia Lloyd
Second Second Assistant Director: Tom Gabbutt
The Thin Red Line
Unit Production Manager: Grant Hill
First Assistant Director: Skip Cosper
Second Assistant Directors: Karen Estelle Collins, Simon Warnock
Second Second Assistant Director: Jennifer Leacey
Saving Private Ryan
Production Manager: Mark Huffam
First Assistant Director: Sergio Mimica-Gezzan
Second Assistant Director: Adam Goodman
Second Second Assistant Director: Karen Richards
The Truman Show
Unit Production Managers: Richard Luke Rothschild, Joseph P. Kane
First Assistant Director: Alan B. Curtiss
Second Assistant Director: Jonathan Watson
Second Second Assistant Director: David Bernstein

"This group of nominees truly embodies the concept of outstanding directorial achievement," DGA Vice President Coolidge said. "Each nominee has a distinct style and a unique creative vision, and they are all worthy representatives of the best of the art and craft of motion picture directing."

This is Steven Spielberg’s ninth nomination, the most ever for a director in the feature film category. Prior to today’s nomination, Spielberg had been tied with Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder and Fred Zinnemann for the most DGA nominations in this category. Spielberg’s first came in 1975 for Jaws, followed by Close Encounters of the Third Kind in 1977, Raiders of the Lost Ark in 1981, E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial in 1982, The Color Purple in 1985, Empire of the Sun in 1987. Schindler’s List in 1993 and Amistad in 1997. Spielberg has won the DGA Award twice, for both The Color Purple (1985) and Schindler’s List (1993).

The Truman Show marks Peter Weir’s third DGA nomination. He was previously nominated in 1985 (Witness) and 1989 (Dead Poets Society).

Roberto Benigni, John Madden and Terrence Malick are all first-time nominees.

This is the second time Spielberg and Weir have been fellow nominees. In 1985 they joined Ron Howard (Cocoon), John Huston (Prizzi’s Honor) and Sydney Pollack (Out of Africa), with Spielberg winning the award for The Color Purple.

The feature film nominees will be joined at the 51st Anniversary DGA Awards Dinner by the soon-to-be-announced nominees in documentary and television categories, as well as special award honorees.

The DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film has traditionally been a near perfect barometer for the Best Director Academy Award. Only four times since the DGA Award’s inception in 1949 has the DGA Award winner not won the Academy Award:

  • 1968: Anthony Harvey won the DGA Award for The Lion in Winter while Carol Reed took home the Oscar® for Oliver!.
  • 1972: Francis Ford Coppola received the DGA’s nod for The Godfather while the Academy selected Bob Fosse for Cabaret.
  • 1985: Steven Spielberg received his first DGA Award for The Color Purple while the Oscar® went to Sydney Pollack for Out of Africa.
  • 1995: Ron Howard was chosen by the DGA for his direction of Apollo 13 while Academy voters cited Mel Gibson for Braveheart.

Lily Bedrossian -
Director of Media Relations
(310) 289-5334