As we inch closer to true equality and inclusivity, here we stand with two women, one man of Korean descent, and two white men as the Directors Guild’s nominees for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Narrative Feature Film. The odds-on favorite has to be Chloé Zhao, who not only decimated all the Critics Awards thus far, but was honored by the HFPA at the Golden Globes, as well as at the Critics Choice Awards. Beyond happy to see Emerald Fennell show up here, as I had assumed they would simply place her in the First Feature category instead. Zhao’s biggest competition might just be Aaron Sorkin, whose film “The Trial of the Chicago 7” has been discussed as the possible Best Picture winner this year. David Fincher and Lee Isaac Chung might be the only expendables on this list. And if that were to happen, Regina King would likely be the one to swoop in and take the spot. Missing on these lists are Spike Lee for “Da 5 Bloods” and Paul Greengrass for “News Of The World.”


Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
NARRATIVE Feature Film

Lee Isaac Chung

Emerald Fennell
“Promising Young Woman”
(Focus Features)

David Fincher

Aaron Sorkin
“The Trial of the Chicago 7”

Chloé Zhao
(Searchlight Pictures)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
First-Time NARRATIVE Feature Film

Radha Blank
“The Forty-Year-Old Version”

Fernando Frías de la Parra
“I’m No Longer Here”

Regina King
“One Night In Miami”
(Amazon Studios)

Darius Marder
“Sound of Metal”
(Amazon Studios)

Florian Zeller
“The Father”
(Sony Pictures Classics)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in

Michael Dweck & Gregory Kershaw
“The Truffle Hunters”
(Sony Pictures Classics)

Pippa Ehrlich & James Reed
“My Octopus Teacher”

David France
“Welcome to Chechnya”

Amanda McBaine & Jesse Moss
“Boys State”

Benjamin Ree
“The Painter and the Thief”


Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Dramatic Series

Jason Bateman
Episode: “Wartime”
Unit Production Manager: Matthew Spiegel
First Assistant Director: Peter Thorell
Second Assistant Director: Townson Wells
Second Second Assistant Director: Sarah Gorczyk

Jon Favreau
“The Mandalorian”
Episode: “Chapter 9: The Marshal”
Unit Production Manager: Colin Wilson
First Assistant Director: Kim Richards
Second Assistant Director: Heather Wagner‑Wang
Second Second Assistant Director: Heather Kehayas
Additional Second Assistant Director: David Buchwald
(Disney Plus)

Vince Gilligan
“Better Call Saul
Episode: “Bagman”
Unit Production Manager: James Paul Hapsas
First Assistant Director: Efrain Cortes
Second Assistant Director: Louis Lanni
Second Second Assistant Director: KiKi Levine

Lesli Linka Glatter
Episode: “Prisoners of War”
Unit Production Managers: Michael Klick, Philippa Naughten
First Assistant Director: Sunday Stevens
Second Assistant Director: Wendy Bledsoe

Julie Anne Robinson
Episode: “Diamond of the First Water”
First Assistant Director: Ian Foster Woolf

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Comedy Series

Zach Braff
“Ted Lasso”
Episode: “Biscuits”
(Apple TV Plus)

MJ Delaney
“Ted Lasso”
Episode: “The Hope that Kills You”
(Apple TV Plus)

Susanna Fogel
“The Flight Attendant”
Episode: “In Case of Emergency”
Unit Production Manager: Bonnie Muñoz
First Assistant Director: Derek Peterson
Second Assistant Director: Jacquie Dore
Second Second Assistant Director: Zach Citarella
Location Manager: Chris Banks
(HBO Max)

Erin O’Malley
“Curb Your Enthusiasm
Episode: “The Surprise Party”
Unit Production Manager: Mary Church
First Assistant Director: Adam Feil
Second Assistant Director: Candice Lee
Second Second Assistant Director: D.J. Carter


Jeff Schaffer
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Episode: “The Spite Store”
Unit Production Manager: Mary Church
First Assistant Director: Adam Feil
Second Assistant Director: Candice Lee
Second Second Assistant Directors: D.J. Carter, Brent Stanton

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Movies for Television and Limited Series

Susanne Bier
“The Undoing”
Unit Production Manager: Deb Dyer
First Assistant Director: Richard Styles
Second Assistant Director: Josh Muzaffer
Location Manager: Lauri Pitkus
Second Second Assistant Directors: Steven Lafferty, Alex Scricco
Additional Second Assistant Directors: Alex Scricco, Zachary Citarella

Scott Frank
“The Queen’s Gambit”
First Assistant Director: Aldric La’auli Porter

Thomas Kail
Unit Production Manager: David Backus
First Assistant Director: Robin Abrams
Second Assistant Director: Thomas Gaito
(Disney Plus)

Matt Shakman
Unit Production Manager: Mary Kane
First Assistant Director: Janell Sammelman
Second Assistant Directors: Meaghan F. McLaughlin, Stephanie Tull Coscina
Second Second Assistant Directors: Katye Kalivoda, Nadeem Ashayer (Los Angeles Unit)
Additional Second Assistant Directors: Kate Pulley, George Williams (Los Angeles Unit)
(Disney Plus)

Lynn Shelton
“Little Fires Everywhere”
Unit Production Manager: Brad Yacobian
First Assistant Director: Luke Maxcy
Second Assistant Director: Kirisa Gavrin
Second Second Assistant Directors: Christina Lee, Gabriella Poli Vidal

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Variety/Talk/News/Sports – Regularly Scheduled Programming

Paul H. Casey
“Real Time With Bill Maher”
Episode: “Episode 1835”
Associate Director: Stacy Talbot
Stage Managers: Brian Anderson, Patrick Whitney

Jim Hoskinson
“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”
Episode: “1025 Live Show Following Capitol Insurrection”

Associate Directors: Yvonne De Mare, Karen Yaeger
Stage Managers: Mark McKenna, Jeff Leib

Don Roy King
“Saturday Night Live”
Episode: “Dave Chappelle; Foo Fighters”
Associate Directors: Michael Mancini, Michael Poole, Laura Ouziel‑Mack
Stage Managers: Gena Rositano, Chris Kelly, Eddie Valk

David Paul Meyer
“The Daily Show with Trevor Noah”
Episode: “President Obama: Inspiring Future Leaders & “A Promised Land””

Associate Director: Susan Faith Locke‑Shapiro
(Comedy Central)

Christopher Werner
“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
Episode: “Trump & Election Results”

Associate Director: John Scott Wilson
Stage Manager: Dino Castelli
Location Manager: Demian Resnick

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Variety/Talk/News/Sports – Specials

Stacey Angeles
“The Daily Show with Trevor Noah Presents: Remembering RBG – A Nation Ugly Cries with Desi Lydic
(Comedy Central)

Marielle Heller
“What the Constitution Means to Me
Associate Director: Tomas ‘Dutch’ Deckaj
Stage Manager: Nicole Payson

Jim Hoskinson
“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”
Episode: “Stephen Colbert’s Election Night 2020: Democracy’s Last Stand: Building Back America Great Again Better 2020”

Associate Directors: Yvonne De Mare, Karen Yaeger
Stage Managers: Mark McKenna, Jeff Leib

Spike Lee
“David Byrne’s American Utopia
Unit Production Manager: Nina Shiffman
First Assistant Director: Jermaine Sumra
Second Assistant Director: Lizz Zanin
Additional Second Assistant Director: Steven Bruno
Location Manager: John Maher

Thomas Schlamme
“A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote”
Unit Production Manager: Debra James
First Assistant Director: Shawn Pipkin‑West
Second Assistant Director: Courtney Franklin
Second Second Assistant Directors: Ni’cole Pettis, Cathy Bond
(HBO Max)

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Reality Programs

David Charles
“World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji”
Episode: “3,2,1…Go!”

Associate Director: Daniel Curran
Stage Managers: Ian Blankenship, Kevin Fletcher, Andy Nelson, Mickel Picco

Jon Favreau
“The Chef Show”
Episode: “Tartine”

Associate Director: Annie Johnson

Ken Fuchs
“Shark Tank”
Episode: “1211”
Associate Director: Amy Barker
Head Stage Manager: Eric Rhoden
Stage Managers: Doug Neal, Michael Strauss

Joseph Guidry
“Full Bloom”
Episode: “Petal to the Metal”
*Associate Director: Sean Galvin
Lead Stage Manager: Jimmy Chriss
Stage Managers: Rachel Shimko, Kristianna Laroda, Richard Melendez
(HBO Max)

Rich Kim
“Lego Masters
Episode: “Mega City Block”
Associate Director: Ryan Bunnell
Stage Managers: Will Baker, Kevin Fletcher

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in
Children’s Programs

Kabir Akhtar
“High School Musical: The Musical ‑ The Series”
Episode: “Opening Night”
Unit Production Managers: Jeff T. Miller, Greg A. Hampson
First Assistant Director: Brent Geisler
Second Assistant Director: Cody Harbaugh
(Disney Plus)

Larissa Bills
“On Pointe”
Episode: “Showtime!”
(Disney Plus)

Dean Israelite
“The Astronauts”
Episode: “Countdown”

Richie Keen
“The Healing Powers of Dude”
Episode: “Second Step: Homeroom”
Unit Production Manager: Chris Phillips
First Assistant Director: Natalie Van Doren

Amy Schatz
“We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest

Outstanding Directorial Achievement in

Steve Ayson
“The Great Chase”
Nike ‑ Wieden + Kennedy Shanghai

First Assistant Director: John Lowe

Nisha Ganatra
“wombstories, Bodyform/Libresse – AMVBBDO
(Chelsea Pictures)

Niclas Larsson
See the Unseen,” VW Touareg ‑ adam&eveDDB
“The Parents,” Volvo XC60 ‑ Forsman & Bodenfors

Melina Matsoukas
“You Love Me, Beats by Dr. Dre”

First Assistant Director: Paul Norman
Second Assistant Director: Don Johnson

Taika Waititi
The Letter, Coca‑Cola”
Wieden & Kennedy London
(Hungry Man)

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