James CameronThe Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences picked the wrong year to double the number of Best Picture Oscar nominees. For weeks, it has been apparent that there are only five 2009 movies in contention, and perhaps as few as six that deserve to be. But the nominations announced today by the Directors Guild of America remove any lingering doubt about the Oscars race.

The DGA's nominees for Best Directorial Achievement in Feature Films for 2009 are the directors of the five movies that have dominated the Oscar conversation: James Cameron for 'Avatar,' 'Jason Reitman for 'Up in the Air,' Kathryn Bigelow for 'The Hurt Locker,' Quentin Tarantino for 'Inglourious Basterds,' and Lee Daniels for 'Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.' I had hoped that Clint Eastwood would take Lee Daniels' spot on the DGA ballot -- both films have powerful themes about racial issues, and Eastwood's 'Invictus' is a vastly more assured piece of work -- and he may yet do that on the Oscar ballot.
categories Oscars