'The Revenant' Back In Oscar Hunt With Alejandro González Iñárritu's DGA Win

'The Revenant' Back In Oscar Hunt With Alejandro González Iñárritu's DGA Win

By Robert Dougherty Feb 08, 2016 11:30 AM
Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox

After the first two guild awards were split by The Big Short and Spotlight, the Directors Guild Awards on Feb. 6 were supposed to be the tiebreaker. But once again, the chance to provide clarity in the Oscar race came and went, as Alejandro González Iñárritu beat out Adam McKay and Tom McCarthy to give The Revenant new life.

The Revenant originally had the momentum before the guilds started after winning the Golden Globes, yet The Big Short took it away by winning the all-important Producers Guild prize, before Spotlight took it back at the SAG Awards. Now things have come full circle with Iñárritu's win, which is his historic second DGA win in a row after last year's Birdman triumph.

By the time he won the DGA last year, however, Birdman had already stolen the Oscar momentum by winning the DGA and SAG. There is no such winning streak this year, and no such certainty that Iñárritu's film will win Best Picture even if he wins his second straight Best Director Oscar.

George Miller was actually a popular pick to take the DGA and then take the Oscar, although Mad Max: Fury Road still wasn't expected to catch The Big Short and Spotlight. While Iñárritu dealt a big blow to Miller's chances, it still doesn't mean the Oscars will give him a second straight win -- but with McCarthy having dropped back and with McKay having just gotten taken seriously after years of comedies, Iñárritu may win by process of elimination.

The DGA was really the last guild race that could give a hint for the Oscars, since next week's Writers Guild awards should bring victories for both Spotlight and The Big Short for Best Original and Adapted Screenplay. There are still the BAFTAs on Feb. 14, yet neither Spotlight nor The Revenant will be facing The Big Short for Best Picture.

With three weeks to go, it now looks like the Oscars will be a three-film race right to the bitter end on Feb. 28.

Tags: The Revenant (2016), The Big Short (2015), Spotlight (2015), Alejandro González Iñárritu, Adam McKay, Tom McCarthy, George Miller
About the Author
Robert Dougherty is a longtime online freelance writer, who wrote reviews, articles & editorials on movies/TV for several years on the now defunct Yahoo Voices.
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