Why the 'Les Miz' Director Might Steal an Oscar Nod from Quentin Tarantino

Esther Zuckerman
Why the 'Les Miz' Director Might Steal an Oscar Nod from Quentin Tarantino

The Directors Guild of America nominations came out Tuesday, with some obvious veteran choices leading the field ahead of Thursday's Oscar nominations. (Steven Spielberg, for instance, has been nominated for one of these things 11 times now.) But perhaps the most surprising nomination wasn't newcomer DGA nominee Ben Affleck — because everyone's basically forgotten about Gigli by now — so much as Les Misérables director Tom Hooper. Mind you, Hooper won the DGA award and the Oscar two years ago for The King's Speech, but he made camera choices in Les Miz — close-ups that displayed some of the inner-workings of Anne Hathaway's mouth, for instance — that have some crying foul. And that could mean snubs by the end of the week.

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The post-announcement chatter got catty. The headline for Glenn Whipp's piece at the Los Angeles Times asked "These voters did see 'Les Miz,' right?" And on Twitter there is outrage that Quentin Tarantino, director of Django Unchained, was left out of the running: 

Even if you cried at LES MIZ and found DJANGO deplorable, are you really going to argue that Hooper *outdirected* Tarantino? Because no DGA.

— Scott Tobias (@scott_tobias) January 8, 2013

The Director's Guild nominations contain a couple of stinkers. The DGA Thinks Hooper > Tarantino bit.ly/UUjvrn

— Badass Digest (@badassdigest) January 8, 2013

Though the more crowd-pleasing choice is not an unusual one: 

The DGA picking Tom Hooper over Quentin would disturb me more if it weren't in keeping with Oscar tradition

— Lucas Shaw (@Lucas_Shaw) January 8, 2013

So what does this mean for Thursday's Oscar nominations? Whipp writes "we're leaning toward Hooper winning an Oscar nomination." That said, Anthony Breznican of Entertainment Weekly notes that DGA nominees and Oscar nominees don't often match perfectly. And The Hollywood Reporter's Scott Feinberg notes a caveat to Hooper's DGA nomination. 

Important to note: Hooper made his name in TV. The DGA is composed of both TV and film directors--reportedly more of the former than latter.

— Scott Feinberg (@ScottFeinberg) January 8, 2013