Directors Guild President Taylor Hackford announced that John Libretto has been appointed to chair the Guild’s Network Staff Negotiating Committee. Libretto will be joined by Director Brett Holey and Associate Director Scott Berger who will serve as Vice-Chairs of the Committee. ”Their combined years of experience working in television news along with their previous negotiating experience will be enormous assets to the Guild when it comes time to negotiate our network contract in New York.” Libretto is the Senior Director for News for NBC and director of Dateline NBC. Holey is the Director and Senior Broadcast Producer for NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams and Director of NBC News Specials. Berger is an Associate Director on the CBS Evening News and is the current Assistant Secretary-Treasurer of the DGA’s National Board of Directors and has served 12 terms on the AD/SM/PA East Council. He has been on every DGA Network Negotiating Committee since the 1980s, including serving as the Vice-Chair Committee in the last round of negotiations. READ MORE »
Taylor Hackford says he won’t run for a third term as president of the Directors Guild of America. Hackford, whose latest feature Parker opened last weekend and who’s directing the pilot Company Town for The CW, revealed his decision in …
Related: DGA Award Fim Nominations Announced
The Directors Guild of America revealed its TV and commercial nominees today. Winners will be announced at the 65th annual DGA Awards Dinner hosted by Kelsey Grammer on February 2 at Hollywood & Highland. Here’s the full list:
MOVIES FOR TELEVISION AND MINI-SERIES
Political Animals, “Pilot”
Mr. Berlanti’s Directorial Team:
·Unit Production Manager: Suzanne Geiger
·First Assistant Director: Richard Coad
·Second Assistant Director: Katie Carroll
·Second Second Assistant Director: Brad Robinson
This is Mr. Berlanti’s first DGA Award nomination.
Hemingway & Gellhorn
Mr. Kaufman’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Trish Hofmann
· Assistant Unit Production Manager: Frank Simeone
· First Assistant Director: Mike Topoozian
· Second Assistant Director: Michael A. McCue
· Second Second Assistant Director: Cindy A. Taylor
This is Mr. Kaufman’s second DGA Award nomination. He was previously nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for The Right Stuff in 1983.
Hatfields & McCoys
Mr. Reynolds’ Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Lucia Maghiar
· First Assistant Director: Christopher Landry
· Second Assistant Director: Maria Nita
· Second Second Assistant Director: Madalina Bugeanu
This is Mr. Reynolds’ first DGA Award nomination.
Mr. Roach’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Mary Kane
· First Assistant Director: Josh King
· Second Assistant Director: Emily McGovern
· Second Second Assistant Director: Brian F. Relyea
This is Mr. Roach’s second DGA Award nomination. He previously won the DGA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Movies for Television and Mini-Series for Recount in 2008.
American Horror Story: Asylum, “Dark Cousin”
Mr. Rymer’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Chip Vucelich
· First Assistant Director: Ron Rapiel
· Second Assistant Director: Francesco Tignini
· Additional Second Assistant Director: Jason Z. Kemp
· Second Second Assistant Director: Jeremy Reisig
This is Mr. Rymer’s first DGA Award nomination.
Homeland, “The Choice”
Mr. Cuesta’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: J. David Brightbill
· First Assistant Director: Ken Collins
· Second Assistant Director: Kim Kennedy
This is Mr. Cuesta’s second DGA Award nomination. He was previously nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Series for the “Pilot” episode of Homeland in 2011.
Mad Men, “A Little Kiss”
Ms. Getzinger’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Michele Greco
· First Assistant Director: Adam Ben Frank
· Second Assistant Director: Jessica Lowrey
· Second Second Assistant Director: Erik J. Carpenter
This is Ms. Getzinger’s third DGA Award nomination. She was previously nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Series in 2009 for her Mad Men episode “The Gypsy and the Hobo” and again in 2010 for her Mad Men episode “The Suitcase.”
LESLI LINKA GLATTER
Homeland, “Q & A”
Ms. Glatter’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: J. David Brightbill
· First Assistant Director: Louis J. Guerra
· Second Assistant Director: Kim Kennedy
This is Ms. Glatter’s third DGA Award nomination. She won for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Series in 2009 for the “Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency” episode of Mad Men and was nominated in 1990 for “Episode 32006” of Twin Peaks.
Breaking Bad, “Fifty-One”
Mr. Johnson’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Stewart A. Lyons
· Assistant Unit Production Manager: James Paul Hapsas
· First Assistant Director: Ben Scissors
· Second Assistant Director: Louis Lanni
· Second Second Assistant Director: Anna Ramey
· Additional Second Assistant Director: Joann Connolly
This is Mr. Johnson’s first DGA Award nomination.
The Newsroom, “We Just Decided To”
Mr. Mottola’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Leanne Moore
· First Assistant Director: Kenneth B. Roth
· Second Assistant Director: Zach Hunt
· Second Second Assistant Director: Steve Dudycha
This is Mr. Mottola’s first DGA Award nomination.
Louie, “New Year’s Eve”
Mr. C.K.’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Managers: M. Blair Breard, Tony Hernandez
· First Assistant Director: Adam Escott
· Second Assistant Director: Nicholas Vanderpool
This is Mr. C.K.’s first DGA Award nomination.
The Big Bang Theory, “The Date Night Variable”
Mr. Cendrowski’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Kelly-Anne Lee
· First Assistant Director: Anthony Rich
· Second Assistant Director: Chris Klausen
· Second Second Assistant Director: Nikki Lorre
· Associate Director: Gay Linvill
This is Mr. Cendrowski’s first DGA Award nomination.
Modern Family, “Election Day”
Mr. Cranston’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Sally Young
· First Assistant Director: Jim Hensz
· Second Assistant Director: Helena Lamb
· Second Second Assistant Director: Matthew W. Heffernan
· Additional Second Second Assistant Director: Patrick Richmond
This is Mr. Cranston’s first DGA Award nomination.
Ms. Dunham’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Managers: Regina Heyman, Ilene S. Landress
· First Assistant Director: Mark McGann
· Second Assistant Director: Jason Ivey
· Second Second Assistant Director: Marcos Gonzalez Palma
This is Ms. Dunham’s first DGA Award nomination.
30 Rock, “Live from Studio 6H”
Ms. McCarthy-Miller’s Directorial Team:
· Unit Production Manager: Diana Schmidt
· First Assistant Director: James E. Sheridan
· Second Assistant Directors: Jennifer Truelove, Bill Sell
· Associate Directors: Stefani Cohen, Bob Caminiti, Michael Poole
· Stage Managers: Gena Rositano, Chris Kelly, Lynn Finkel
This is Ms. McCarthy-Miller’s eighth DGA Award nomination. She was previously nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series for 30 Rock episodes “Live Show” in 2010, “The Reunion Episode #304” in 2008 and “Somebody to Love” in 2007. She won the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Musical Variety twice, in 2001 for America: A Tribute to Heroes (co-directed with Joel Gallen) and in 2000 for the “Val Kilmer/U2” episode of Saturday Night Live. She was also twice nominated in this category for Saturday Night Live episodes “Christopher Walken & The Foo Fighters” in 2003 and the 25th Anniversary episode in 1999.
This morning’s just-announced DGA Award nominations are good news for the major studios and bad news for Harvey Weinstein. With Ben Affleck for Warner Bros’ Argo, Kathryn Bigelow for Sony’s Zero Dark Thirty, Tom Hooper for Universal’s Les Miserables, Ang Lee for 20th Century Fox’s Life Of Pi and Steven Spielberg for Disney/Dreamworks Lincoln, it was a clean sweep for the majors — a continuing roaring comeback in Oscar contenders for the big boys who the past two years have watched The Weinstein Company take Best Picture (and top DGA) honors with small indies like The Artist and The King’s Speech. Clearly, even as their focus is on money-making blockbusters and popcorn entertainment, the majors are no longer sitting on the sidelines when it comes to the Oscars and seem fully invested in the process this year at least.
Related: DGA Award Nominations Announced
It’s highly unusual since the advent of the Miramax takeover of Oscar seasons the past quarter century to see no independent contender in a strong position. But, at least as far as the DGA is concerned, that’s the story here, along with the fact that four of the five nominees are past DGA- and Oscar-directing winners, with Affleck the only newcomer to the DGA club after directing only his third feature film (he is an Oscar winner for co-writing Good Will Hunting). Bigelow and Hooper both won in the last three years and have made a quick return to the golden circle. Spielberg, meanwhile, is the Big Kahuna of the DGA as he is a three-time winner (The Color Purple, Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan) and now 11-time nominee as well as winner of the guild’s Life Achievement Award. Lee’s enormously impressive technical feat in bringing what was thought to be an unfilmable book, Life Of Pi, so successfully to the big screen is clearly something that appealed to the sensibility of directors, so his nomination was definitely expected. This will make for one of the tightest and most interesting directing races in years at the DGA.
The Directors Guild of America has released nominees for its Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film award, which will be presented at the 65th annual …
Seven weeks from today Oscar nominating ballots will be in the hands of Academy voters. Seven weeks! No wonder Academy campaigners already seem stressed and overheated about the race. With the Acad moving to electronic voting and shifting the nominating balloting period 10 days earlier than normal to the holiday corridor of Dec 17 thru Jan 3 this has become the most truncated race in memory, as least as far as those all important nominations are concerned. Noms will be announced on January 10th. That’s two weeks earlier than last year and the same day as the Broadcast Film Critics Association recently announced they would hand out their precursor awards this year and just three days before the Golden Globes. The Academy’s surprise move even forced the Director’s Guild Of America to move up the date of their own nominations announcement by two days to January 8th as everyone scrambles to maintain their piece of the pie and Oscar consultants try to figure out ways to get their movies seen before those ballots are in voters hands.
Speaking of the DGA, their normally non-controversial membership screening program is suddenly causing waves and concern among some awards campaign consultants who got the Guild’s November screening schedule and felt it was showing favoritism to one big contender over all the others. The Guild normally has one official screening for members in LA, NY, SF, DC and Chicago for most movies. The all-important November schedule does list just one official Guild-sanctioned showing for such contenders as Hitchcock, The Life Of Pi, The Sessions, Silver Linings Playbook, Anna Karenina and Skyfall among other buzzed-titles, with all but the latter two featuring a Q&A with its director. Disney/Dreamworks’ Lincoln though has been given two prime back-to-back official screenings at 3 and 7 PM on Saturday November 10th featuring a Steven Spielberg Q&A following the first one. One studio rep with contenders this year said they had never heard of this happening before and at least one other called the DGA to question them about it. Yet another veteran consultant I contacted who has a film scheduled for November also said it was the first time they had heard of this DGA policy and was upset about the perceived favoritism.
The Directors Guild of America has found that when it comes to who sits in the director’s chair on TV series, they’re still white and male — and that trend is growing. According to a DGA report released today, white males directed 73% of primetime episodic TV on the main networks, cable and premium cable. That’s up 1% from a similar study the DGA did last year. The guild looked at more than 3,100 episodes of TV from the 2011-2012 network season and 190 scripted series from the 2011 cable season. TV directed by minority males decline from 14% last year to 13%. TV directed by white women stayed the same at 11%, while the percentage directed by minority women increased from 3% to 4%.
HBO’s Veep and TNT’s Dallas reboot were among the eight shows found by the DGA report that didn’t hire any women or minority directors. “In this day and age, it’s quite disappointing that so many shows failed to hire even a single woman or minority director during the course of an entire season — even shows whose cast and crew otherwise is notably diverse”, said DGA First VP and Sons Of Anarchy producer Paris Barclay. ABC’s Revenge (14%), HBO’s The Newsroom (11%), ABC’s Modern Family (8%) and CBS’ CSI (5%) were among the shows that hired a non-white male director for less than 15% of their episodes. CSI: NY (33%), FX’s Sons Of Anarchy (36%), HBO’s Girls (44%) and Disney XD’s Lab Rats (80%) were among those who hired minority or female directors for a significant number of episodes. VH1’s Single Ladies and BET shows The Game, Let’s Stay Together and Read Between The Lines were given a 100% rating for hiring minority or female directors.
Below is the DGA’s full “Worst Of” and “Best Of” lists noted in the study:
“There’s nothing better than watching a movie on the big screen, exactly as the director intended,” said DGA President Taylor Hackford. “But it’s not always possible for our members to get to the theater to see every film in awards contention. For that reason, the National Board has decided to allow members to receive ‘for your consideration’ screeners.”
The DGA had a longstanding policy of not allowing awards season screeners. The Guild believed that films sent out on DVD could have an advantage over films that are not able to be sent out due to limited marketing budgets or other financial constraints of studios and distributors. Additionally, most DGA members have numerous opportunities to see films in awards contention in other ways.
Barry Sonnenfeld must pay UTA up to $325,000 on his paycheck from Men In Black III, a DGA/ATA arbitration ruling revealed today. The director’s former agency will get even more if there are more sequels of the Will Smith-Tommy Lee Jones sci-fi franchise. The seven-page ruling (read it here) filed today in LA Superior Court determines that Sonnenfeld owes 10% of the $3.5 million he’s getting for the film. Men in Black III comes out on May 25, 2012.
Los Angeles – DGA President Taylor Hackford today announced the results of a series of elections that took place at yesterday’s National Board Meeting. Former DGA President Michael Apted, who had been appointed to fill the position of Secretary-Treasurer when Gil Cates passed away last fall, was elected Secretary-Treasurer by the DGA’s National Board of Directors at the regularly-scheduled board meeting yesterday. Board Alternate Jon Favreau was elected to fill Apted’s board seat, and Todd Holland was elected to fill Favreau’s alternate board seat. After many years of Guild service, Ed Sherin, who was named DGA Honorary Life Member at Saturday’s DGA Awards, announced that he was resigning his seat on the National Board.
The leading supporters of legislation to attack overseas web sites that traffic in pirated entertainment say that they’re prepared to address some legislators’ concerns about potential threats to legitimate Internet businesses. “I think you’ll see some movement,” says Michael O’Leary, MPAA’s Senior Executive Vice President for Global Policy and External Affairs. But he adds that it probably won’t be enough to stop tech companies from opposing the bill — known in the House as the Stop Online Piracy Act and in the Senate as Protect IP Act. Some of them “have no intention of agreeing” to a compromise, he says, because they “want the current state of play to continue.” The comments came in a briefing that included the Directors Guild of America and the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employee’s Union. They’re eager to communicate the industry’s reasons for supporting the legislation that would give federal officials the authority to block overseas web sites that sell copyrighted work without the owners’ permission. “Our opposition does not feel constrained by a need to tell the truth,” says Kathy Garmezy, DGA’s Associate Executive Director for Goverment and International Affairs. Tech companies who say that SOPA might violate civil liberties, she adds, are merely trying “to gin people up into a frenzy.”
That appears to be working. The bill has “a lot of hurdles” to overcome, O’Leary says — although he adds that “we will win this
Veteran screenwriter, producer and director Hal Kanter died Sunday of complications of pneumonia in Encino, his daughter Donna Kanter told the Los Angeles Times. He was 92. “He was considered one of the wits of the industry,” said Carl Reiner, upon learning of Kanter’s death. ”He was a funny elder statesman, and there’s nothing better.” In a career that spanned several decades, Kanter worked in radio, TV and movies. He wrote for Bob Hope and Bing Crosby and for Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin. Kanter directed Elvis Presley in Loving You which he co-wrote and he wrote the screenplaly for Blue Hawaii. He even collaborated with Tennessee Williams on the 1955 movie version of The Rose Tatoo. Among other movie credits were George Cukor’s Let’s Make Love, with Marilyn Monroe and Yves Montand and Frank Capra’s Pocketful of Miracles.
His numerous TV credits included creation of the landmark sitcom Julia, for which Diahann Carroll became the first black actress to star in her own sitcom whose character was a professional woman rather than a maid. He also worked briefly on All in the Family and was a writer and produceer on Chico and the Man. His association with the Oscars as a writer on the ceremony began in 1952 when it still on radio and continued for more than 30 years. In 1991 and ’92 he shared Emmys for writing duties on the Oscar show telecast. His other Emmy was for The George Gobel Show.
Among his many accomplishments, Gil Cates obviously will be known as the person who produced more Oscar shows than any one in the history of the Academy. Talk to any producer who has done it just once or twice and you will get this astonished look when you tell them Gil Cates did it 14 times in the last two decades. And with his always calm and cool manner, he made it look so easy. Perhaps that is why every producer doing the show in Gil’s off years always sought out his advice — and he always happily gave it as he told me when I interviewed him exactly one year ago about his memories on being the man behind so many Oscarcasts. “I’ve had lunch with each producer and producing team going back to my off years,” he told me. “The one thing I’ve told everybody is the Oscars is such a big show that no matter what you do there are gonna be people who like it and people who don’t. The most important thing is to do a show you like. There’s no way to get out totally alive. Do a show they find unique and fun and special. That’s a victory.”
Gil Cates had a lot of victories in his long career. As a former president of the DGA, its current secretary/treasurer and its chief negotiator for the last four contracts; as founder of the UCLA School of Theatre, Film and Television; founder and artistic director of the Geffen Playhouse; as director and producer of such multiple-Oscar-nominated films as Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams and I Never Sang For My Father; as well as so many TV films that made a lasting mark on the medium. There’s so much more, but my own personal connection (aside from attending the great theater he oversaw at the Geffen) has always been with the Oscars, and on those occasions when I got to talk to him or interview him I was like a kid in a candy store listening to his stories (sorry, some I just can’t print — off the record). His last show aired in 2008, the year No Country For Old Men won Best Picture. But this was also the year of the writers strike that KO’d the Golden Globes and put a dark cloud over the Oscars until just 12 days before the show was to air, when it was settled. But Cates, with his usual calm of a master negotiator and problem solver, had a Plan A (with all the stars in a strike-free show) and a Plan B (with no stars but a heavy emphasis on history and clips) ready to go, essentially prepping two different shows simultaneously, depending on events out of his control. It’s a good thing he was in charge because a lesser or more inexperienced producer might have cracked under the pressure. Not Gil. In the end, he produced a classy, star-studded show as usual but was ready to deliver whatever cards were dealt.
2ND UPDATE, 12:45 PM: Reaction from Hollywood to Gil Cates’ death today is coming fast. The Geffen Playhouse in Westwood just released a statement mourning its founder and producing director, who in addition to his Oscar pedigree led the Directors Guild of America in labor talks and founded UCLA’s film school. From the statement:
Gil was many things to many people throughout the entertainment industry — to the Oscars, one their longest running producers; to the DGA, their longtime president and chief negotiator; to UCLA, the founder of their school of Theater, Film and Television; and to the Geffen Playhouse, he was our founder, our leader and our heart.
“Gil has always referred to the staff of the Geffen Playhouse as his second family” said Geffen Playhouse Chairman of the Board Frank Mancuso. “And it is as a family that we mourn this tremendous loss. Gil built this theater and he will forever be at the center of it – we honor his life by continuing the fulfillment of his dream. As my dear friend Gil would no doubt say ‘onward and upward with the arts.’ “
From DGA president Taylor Hackford: “There are few people in the history of the Guild who have matched Gil’s vision and influence on the organization and our industry. There was no greater champion of the creative and economic rights of directors and their teams and no truer friend to the membership, board and staff of the DGA. For more than fifty years, Gil has served the Guild — as president, as secretary-treasurer, as negotiations chair. It’s impossible to think of a single issue debated, program launched or battle fought on behalf of us all that didn’t have his special touch in its crafting.
From Steven Spielberg: “No one may ever again achieve what Gil Cates achieved in his contributions to the success of the Motion Picture Academy and the Directors Guild. In producing 14 Oscar shows for the Academy and leading the Directors Guild through challenging times and negotiations, he set a remarkable standard for dedication and excellence. He was the most liked person I knew and will be missed by all who knew him as a proud member of our industry and a great pal to everyone.”
UPDATE, 11:19 AM: The Academy has just issued this statement regarding the death of Gilbert Cates: “Gil was our colleague, our friend and a former governor of the Academy,” said Academy President Tom Sherak. “He was a consummate professional who gave the Academy and the world some of the most memorable moments in Oscar® history. His passing is a tremendous loss to the entertainment industry, and our thoughts go out to his family.”
Cates produced the Academy Awards® 14 times between 1990 and 2008, more than any other individual. He was responsible for first bringing hosts Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, David Letterman, Steve Martin, Chris Rock and Jon Stewart to Oscar’s stage.
Cates served three consecutive terms as a governor of the Academy’s Directors Branch, from 1984 to 1993. He returned to the board for another term beginning in 2002, and held the post of vice president from 2003 to 2005.
PREVIOUS, 10:13 AM: Deadline has confirmed that veteran Academy Awards producer Gilbert Cates died at age 77.