Sunday, January 25, 2015

26th Annual Producers Guild Awards Winners

You want to know what good timing is? Well, it is me predicting yesterday that Boyhood will win Oscar and the same day Birdman wins the PGA Award. (LOL) So, of course, now everyone is predicting a race. Yes, a race for Oscars top award.

Stats say that 18 of the last 25 best picture Oscar winners, including each of the last seven, won the PGA Award. So, the first industry award aligns with the last film critics awards (Critics' Choice) and the foreign press in Hollywood (Golden Globes) to give the award to the producers of Birdman that include the director plus two more producers and the event shakes the odds to make Birdman the front-runner, tonight we will confirm/deny the position when the second industry award is announced at the SAG Awards. Still, not excited about race as for me both "B" movies are not necessarily worth of the American cinema top award, sigh.

Nevertheless the most exciting news about last night is that Jennifer Lawrence was there and she walked the red carpet (lol), will she do the same for the Oscars? Let's hope so, as she is always great to watch with her spontaneity.

Well, if I have to warm to Birdman -the possible Oscar winner, not the movie- then let's share some data why movie is getting top honors. First it's a total original. Second, it is a high-wire act, with many technical innovations that had NEVER been done before. And third, has a story that everyone in the cinema industry can relate, a veteran trying to asset whether or not he is out of work. So, when you know the above, there is no big surprise for the reason why the industry could prefer Birdman over critically acclaimed Boyhood.

Then maybe this year the PGA Awards will not tell much about the Oscars as the animated movie award went to The Lego Movie, which does not have an Oscar nomination; the guild has matched Oscar six out of nine years that the category has existed. On top they gave the documentary award to Life Itself, which also has no Oscar nomination; but seems the group is not documentary savvy as they have matched Oscar only three times in the seven years the category existed.  Last, consider that among the PGA nominees there was only one documentary that got an Oscar nomination.

Winners are in *BLUE.

The Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures

Bradley Cooper, Clint Eastwood, Andrew Lazar, Robert Lorenz and Peter Morgan for American Sniper
*Alejandro González Iñárritu, John Lester, James W. Skotchdopole for Birdman
Richard Linklater and Cathleen Sutherland for Boyhood
Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik and Bennett Miller for Foxcatcher
Ceán Chaffin for Gone Girl
Wes Anderson, Scott Rudin, Jeremy Dawson and Steven Rales for The Grand Budapest Hotel
Nora Grossman, Ido Ostrowsky, Teddy Schwarzman for The Imitation Game
Jennifer Fox and Tony Gilroy for Nightcrawler
Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Lisa Bruce and Anthony McCarten for The Theory of Everything
Jason Blum, Helen Estabrok and David Lancaster for Whiplash

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures

Roy Conli for Big Hero 6
Brad Booker and Guillermo del Toro for The Book of Life
David Bleiman Ichioka and Travis Knight for The Boxtrolls
Bonnie Arnold for How To Train Your Dragon 2
*Dan Lin for The Lego Movie

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures

The Green Prince, Nadav Schirman, Germany, USA, UK and Israel
*Life Itself, Steve James, USA
Merchants of Doubt, Robert Kenner, USA
Particle Fever, Mark Levinson, USA
Virunga, Orlando von Einsiedel, UK and Congo

From last night awards the only award that really excited me is the Danny Thomas Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Comedy that went to a show that yes, is NO comedy -mainly is a drama-, one of my favorite TV shows: Orange is the New Black (yay!).

To check winners in all categories, TV and Digital Series, go official site here.

Just right now the producers guild announced the nominations for feature films and as we know these nominations can be directly related to the possible Oscar Best Film nominations.

Producers guild chose 10 films suggesting that there are chances that Oscar could nominate 10 films and do most of the films below are the ones that have much award season buzz, there are two omissions that could change the game and definitively change my predictions.  I'm talking about two films by two female directors, Selma by Ava DuVernay and Unbroken by Angelina Jolie.

But there is still hope for those films as the producers tend to be slightly more mainstream than the Academy, which is dominated by the actors branch and usually offers more craft diversity; which also could give opportunity to more mainstream Interstellar and musical Into the Woods. Still these nominations give no clue to identify a Best Film front-runner and if Oscar has different nominees, then the question is which films will be out to make room to include any of the four films mentioned.

We have to recall that PGA winner and Oscar Best Film winner have a good trajectory as 18 of the past 25 years they have coincide; as a matter of fact each of the last six years they have been the same, a streak that most likely could go on to a seventh time this year. One thing is truth in those years with no clear front-runner, PGA winner has given a boost to unexpected films and maybe this year could happen the same; or maybe producers and critics agree that Boyhood is the film, or maybe something else could happen!

To check the TV categories announced today go here.

The Producers Guild of America (PGA) announced today its Documentary Motion Pictures, Television Series/Specials, and Digital Series nominees that will advance in the voting process for the 26th Annual Producers Guild Awards.

All other nominations and the names of the eligible producers for the Award for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures will be announced on January 5, 2015. The 2015 Producers Guild Awards takes place on Saturday, January 24 at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles.

If you wish to check the TV and Digital Series nominations please go here as this post now has the Documentary Motion Picture Nominations but on January 5th will list all the categories related to only Motion Picture. So until that date this is a work in progress.

Most surprising is to find that the Producers Guild of America didn't nominate the documentary that many -including me- was expecting to win the Oscar: Citizenfour. Strange and hope to learn soon the reason why this documentary was snubbed; let's hope is nothing related to the gender of the doc director. Sigh.

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