Greta Gerwig and Jordan Peele among the 2018 DGA Awards nominees
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Greta Gerwig and Jordan Peele among the feature film nominees for the 2018 DGA Awards

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Greta Gerwig DGA

The Directors Guild of America has announced the nominations for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2017. Since its inception, the DGA winner has gone on to the win the Academy Award for Best Director, so it should certainly be interesting to see which of these five nominees picks up the award next month.

“2018 marks the 70th anniversary of the DGA Awards, and filmmaking has reached new heights with each passing year. These nominees embody the excellence that comes to life when unique vision, craft, and skill come together in pursuit of masterful storytelling,” said DGA president Thomas Schlamme. “Being nominated by their peers is what makes this award especially meaningful for directors, and I congratulate all of the nominees for their outstanding work.”

The 2018 DGA Awards will be handed out on February 3 at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles. You can check out the complete list of nominations below.

FEATURE FILM:

Guillermo del Toro, “The Shape of Water”
(Fox Searchlight Pictures)

del Toro’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: J. Miles Dale
Production Manager: Dennis Chapman
First Assistant Director: Pierre Henry
Second Assistant Director: Tyler Delben

Greta Gerwig, “Lady Bird” 
(A24)

Gerwig’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: Lila Yacoub, Danielle Blumstein, Jamin O’Brien (New York Crew)
First Assistant Directors: Jonas Spaccarotelli, Cedric Vara (New York Crew)
Second Assistant Director: Brendan Lee, Dana Zolli (New York Crew)
Second Second Assistant Directors: Lillian Awa, Teri Barber

Martin McDonagh, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
(Fox Searchlight Pictures)

McDonagh’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: Bergen Swanson
Assistant Unit Production Manager: Peggy Robinson
First Assistant Director: Peter Kohn
Second Assistant Director: Paula Case
Second Second Assistant Director: Spencer Taylor

Christopher Nolan, “Dunkirk” 
(Warner Bros.)

Nolan’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: David Witz, Christine Raspillere (France Unit), Chris Brock (UK Unit), Nicky Tüske (Netherlands Unit)
First Assistant Directors: Nilo Otero, William Pruss (France Unit), Willem Quarles van Ufford (Netherlands Unit)
Second Assistant Director: Eric Lasko, Nicolas Baldino (France Unit), Alexis Chelli (France Unit), Clément Comet (France Unit)
Second Second Assistant Director: Alina Gatti

Jordan Peele, “Get Out”
(Universal Pictures)

Peele’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: Marcei A. Brown, Rick A. Osako (Fairhope Unit)
First Assistant Director: Gerard DiNardi
Second Assistant Directors: Ram Paul Silbey, Marc Newland (Fairhope Unit), Jack McKenna (New York Unit)
Second Second Assistant Director: Maggie Ballard
Location Manager: Kurt Enger (New York Unit)

FIRST-TIME FEATURE FILM DIRECTOR:

Geremy Jasper, “Patti Cake$”
(Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Jasper’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: Sara Blechman
First Assistant Director: Inna Braude
Second Assistant Director: Natasha Rivera
Second Second Assistant Director: Lucas Isabella
Additional Second Second Assistant Director: Alice Johnson

William Oldroyd, “Lady Macbeth”
(Roadside Attractions)

Oldroyd’s Directorial Team:
Production Manager: Robert K. Harm
Unit Manager: Eugene Galbrath
First Assistant Director: George Every
Second Assistant Director: Richard Stanley Jan Harris

Jordan Peele, “Get Out” 
(Universal Pictures)

Peele’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: Marcei A. Brown, Rick A. Osako (Fairhope Unit)
First Assistant Director: Gerard DiNardi
Second Assistant Directors: Ram Paul Silbey, Marc Newland (Fairhope Unit), Jack McKenna (New York Unit)
Second Second Assistant Director: Maggie Ballard
Location Manager: Kurt Enger (New York Unit)

Taylor Sheridan, “Wind River” 
(Acacia Entertainment)

Sheridan’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Manager: Christopher H. Warner
First Assistant Director: Nicholas Harvard
Second Assistant Director: Jason Altieri
Second Second Assistant Director: Kristina Massie

Aaron Sorkin, “Molly’s Game” 
(STX Entertainment)

Sorkin’s Directorial Team:
Unit Production Managers: Lyn Lucibello-Brancatella, Stuart M. Besser, Michael Beugg (Los Angeles Unit)
Assistant Unit Production Manager: Bart Lipton (Los Angeles Unit)
First Assistant Director: Walter Gasparovic
Second Assistant Directors: Penny Charter, Travis Rehwaldt (New York Unit), Paula Case (Los Angeles Unit)
Second Second Assistant Directors: Conor Griff (New York Unit), Drew Ritson (New York Unit), Bryan Snodgrass (Los Angeles Unit)
Location Manager: Dena Ghieth (New York Unit)

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Taika Waititi signs on to direct ‘Thor 4’ as the live-action ‘Akira’ movie gets delayed indefinitely

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Taika Waititi Thor 4 Akira release date
ASTRID STAWIARZ/GETTY IMAGES

In a move that will force him to put the highly anticipated live-action adaptation of Akira on the backburner indefinitely, Taika Waititi has officially closed a deal to direct Thor 4 for Marvel Studios, sources tell Silver Screen Beat.

The development is a rather surprising one considering Akira — which has been in development at Warner Bros. ever since the studio acquired the rights to the popular Japanese manga in 2002 — was as close as it ever was to getting made.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, pre-production on Akira had been moving along smoothly — despite some concerns with the script that were later resolved — and Waititi had been meeting with and testing young Japanese actors for roles in the film as part of a worldwide search for talent.

But now that the project has experienced yet another major setback, execs can only hope that Waititi will pick up where he left off once he completes Thor 4, which will once again see Chris Hemsworth reprise his role as the titular God of Thunder.

Waititi is currently prepping to hop on the fall festival circuit with his World War II-era satire Jojo Rabbit, which he wrote, directed, and stars in alongside Scarlett Johansson, Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie, Rebel Wilson, and Sam Rockwell. Fox Searchlight will release the film on October 18.

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Warner Bros.’ live-action ‘Barbie’ movie taps Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach as writers

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Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach Barbie
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As Greta Gerwig prepares to debut her sophomore effort Little Women on the fall festival circuit in the coming months, the Oscar-nominee has been tapped to co-write and possibly direct Warner Bros.’ live-action Barbie movie.

Gerwig will pen the script for Barbie along with Noah Baumbach, while Gerwig is also likely to helm the high-profile project, though negotiations are still underway and no deals have been finalized as of yet.

Margot Robbie, who is on board to star as the iconic Mattel toy, will also serve as a producer on the film along with Tom Ackerly for LuckyChap Entertainment and Robbie Brenner of Mattel Films. Josey McNamara and Ynon Kreiz are also producing.

Gerwig is currently in post-production on her star-studded Little Women adaptation for Columbia. The film, which is expected to be a strong contender in the forthcoming awards season race, stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh, Timothée Chalamet, Laura Dern, and Meryl Streep.

Baumbach, who last directed The Meyerowitz Stories, is also in post-production on his untitled dramedy for Netflix starring Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson as a couple who are getting divorced. The cast also includes Dern, Merritt Wever, Ray Liotta, Alan Alda, and Azhy Robertson.

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Damien Chazelle shops new project ‘Babylon’ to studios as Emma Stone circles lead role

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Damien Chazelle Babylon
LIONSGATE

Damien Chazelle, the Oscar-winning writer-director of the 2016 musical La La Land, has begun shopping around the script for his next project titled Babylon, which is yet another story set in Los Angeles that will this time focus on the film industry in the 1920s.

While multiple studios have shown interest in the project — including Paramount and Netflix — Chazelle is most likely to bring Babylon to Lionsgate, the same studio that distributed La La Land and ran its extensive awards season campaign that earned the film a whopping 14 Oscar nominations.

Although specific plot details are being kept tightly under wraps for the time being, the film is said to be a drama set during the Roaring Twenties that examines Hollywood’s transition from silent films to talkies and will feature characters both fictional and not.

Emma Stone, who an Oscar for performance opposite Ryan Gosling in La La Land, is circling the lead role in the film — which is rumored to be iconic Hollywood “It” girl Clara Bow — though talks are still preliminary and any type of formal negotiations have yet to get underway.

Despite the attention that Babylon has caught, though, studios are hesitant to move on the project given its rather lengthy 180-page-long script and estimated $80 million to $100 million production budget, which some execs feel might be too big of a risky investment for their studios.

Chazelle, who last directed the Neil Armstrong biopic First Man starring Gosling, is currently working on two other projects in addition to Babylon, including the musical drama series The Eddy for Netflix and an untitled drama series for Apple’s forthcoming service service.

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