Oscar 2016: Alejandro G. Inarritu Wins Top Award from Directors Guild of America

Alejandro G. Inarritu has won the Directors Guild of America Award for 2015’s top feature film, The Revenant.

An emotional Inarritu fought back tears, noting that his late father had died two years ago and that he believed the award represented a validation for his native country of Mexico.  ‘This embrace is going to a whole country,” he said. “Your embrace makes me feel happy.”

It’s the second year in a row that Inarritu has won the DGA trophy following his award last year for Birdman.


The Revenant helmer became the first director to ever win back-to-back DGA honors for feature filmmaking.

He topped Tom McCarthy  for Spotlight, Adam McKay for The Big Short, George Miller for Mad Max: Fury Road. and Ridley Scott for The Martian.

“Game of Thrones” director David Nutter won the Directors Guild drama series award for the “Mother’s Mercy” episode.

Dee Rees won the Directors Guild TV movie-miniseries award for “Bessie,” the biopic of pioneering blues singer Bessie Smith.

Matthew Heineman won the  documentary award for “Cartel Land,” centered on the Mexican drug war.

“Cartel Land” topped “Amy,” “Going Clear:  Scientology and The Prison of Belief,” “Meru,” and “What Happened, Miss Simone?” “I hope this film will give voice to those trapped in the cycle of violence,” Heineman said in his acceptance.

Chris Addison won the comedy series award for “Veep” for the “Election Night” episode.

“Veep” won over “Louie, “Silicon Valley,” “Modern Family” and “Transparent,” which won the award last year. “Election Night” capped the fourth season of “Veep” with Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Selena Meyer winding up in a tie in electoral college votes for President.

Alex Garland won the first-time feature award for Ex Machina at the Directors Guild of America Awards.

The award, presented by Steven Spielberg, was the first honor announced Saturday night at the DGA’s 68th annual awards ceremonies at the Century Plaza.

It’s the inaugural award for the DGA’s first-time director trophy. Spielberg noted that had the award existed previously, it would have gone to Orson Welles for “Citizen Kane” and John Singleton for “Boyz in the Hood.”

Garland directed “Ex Machina” from his own script. The film, which stars Alicia Vikander as an android, topped Fernando Coimbra  for “A Wolf at the Door,” Joel Edgerton for “The Gift,Marielle Heller for “The Diary of a Teenage Girl” and Laszlo Nemes for “Son of Saul.”

The ceremonies included presentations of medallions to each nominee for the feature film award by prominent cast members. Leonardo DiCaprio presented “The Revenant” director Alejandro Inarritu with his medal; Rachel McAdams presented “Spotlight” director Tom McCarthy with his; and Matt Damon presented to “The Martian” director Ridley Scott.

Jon Favreau, subbing for Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, presented George Miller with the medal for “Mad Max: Fury Road.” “It’s a tour de force that had me just as excited as ‘Mad Max’ had me in high school,” he noted.

Christian Bale, Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling presented Adam McKay with his medallion for “The Big Short.” McKay announced “The Big Short” will be screened for Congress next week with bipartisan support. “We’ll see how long that lasts,” he added.

Kenny Ortega won the children’s award for “Descendants.” He recalled that he joined the DGA three decades ago when John Hughes asked him to direct the dance sequence in “Ferris Bueler’s Day Off.”

Andreas Nilsson of Biscuit Filmworks won the commercials award and received big laughs for his acceptance, saying, “I love you even though I don’t know you personally.”

Adam Vetri won the reality TV award for “Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Challenge.” Dave Diomedi won the Variety/talk/news/sports series award for “The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon”; Don Roy King won Variety/talk/news/sports specials award for “Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary Special.”