Oscar 2011: Directors Guild Award and the Oscar

The winner of the DGA Award has matched the Oscar winner in all but six years since 1948.  Remember last year, when Tom Hooper took both trophies for “The King’s Speech.”

The last divergence came in 2002, when Rob Marshall won the DGA Award for “Chicago” and Roman Polanski received the Academy Award for “The Pianist.”

This year, the director to beat is “The Artist” Michel Hazanavicius, who has won the Directors Guild of America feature film award.

The French director topped Woody Allen for “Midnight in Paris,” David Fincher for “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” Alexander Payne for “The Descendants” and Martin Scorsese for “Hugo.”

“It’s maybe the highest honor I could hope,” Hazanavicius said in his acceptance. “I love directors, I honor directors so this is an honor for me.”

The black and white silent — described by the helmer as a “love letter” to Hollywood — is set in the days during the transition to talkies.

“It’s strange to compare films and say which one is best but I’m very happy to get this,” Hazanavicius concluded in his acceptance speech.

The trophy was presented Saturday night at the Hollywood and Highland ballroom by Tom Hooper, winner of last year’s DGA award for “The King’s Speech.”

James Marsh won the documentary trophy for “Project Nim,” centered on a chimpanzee’s life among humans.

The comedy series trophy went to Robert B. Weide for “Palestinian Chicken” episode of HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” “Modern Family” had won the category for two years in a row.

Patty Jenkins won the dramatic series award goes for the pilot of AMC’s “The Killing.”

The DGA win came on the first nomination for Hazanavicius – and marks the first time that a silent film has won the DGA trophy.

The winner of the DGA Award has matched the Oscar winner in all but six years since 1948, including last year, when Tom Hooper took both trophies for “The King’s Speech.” The last divergence came in 2002, when Rob Marshall won the DGA Award for “Chicago” and Roman Polanski received the Academy Award for “The Pianist.”

Amy Schatz won the DGA Award for childrens programming for “A Child’s Garden of Poetry”

Noam Murro won the DGA commercials award and got a big laugh with his two-word acceptance — “Thank You”

Daytime serials award went to William Ludel for “General Hospital.” The reality award went to Neil P. DeGroot for “The Biggest Loser.”

Woody Allen was a no-show as usual but received big laughs on his videotaped speech for receiving a DGA nom — “This is somewhere between the top, the Nobel Prize, and the bottom, the Republican primary.”