The Oscars don't take place for another two weeks, but it looks like the Best Picture winner may already be decided. On Saturday night, "Birdman" Director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu won top honors at the Directors Guild Awards, besting presumed favorite, "Boyhood" director Richard Linklater, for the award. With the Directors Guild of America win, Iñárritu's film has swept the three major guilds, following previous victories at the Producers Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild award ceremonies.
As The Hollywood Reporter notes, in the last 19 years, only one film that turned the guild hat trick has failed to go on to win Best Picture: "Apollo 13" at the Academy Awards in 1996. Previous films to win all three guild citations and then Best Picture include "American Beauty," "Chicago," "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," "No Country for Old Men," "Slumdog Millionaire," "The King's Speech" and "Argo."
But despite all that history, "Birdman" would still have to overcome one other Oscars stat to clinch a win on Feb. 22. The film failed to score a nomination in the Best Editing category, perhaps due to the fact that Iñárritu and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki shot "Birdman" to appear as if it were one continuous take. The last film to win Best Picture without a corresponding nomination in the Best Editing category was 1980's "Ordinary People." Linklater's "Boyhood," the critical favorite that many expected to take home Best Picture, is nominated in the editing category.
"Birdman" is tied with "The Grand Budapest Hotel" for most nominations at this year's Academy Awards with nine total. The comedy, about a washed-up actor (played by Best Actor nominee Michael Keaton) hoping for a second chance at success, would be the third Best Picture winner in four years to focus on some aspect of Hollywood life, following "The Artist" and "Argo."