Kathryn Bigelow's Oscar Odds Spike with Big DGA Win

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Talk about peaking at the right time: Days after The Hurt Locker took home the Producers Guild of America prize for Best Picture, helmer Kathryn Bigelow hit the jackpot at Saturday's Director's Guild of America award ceremony. She knocked out Avatar kingpin (and ex-husband) James Cameron for the organization's Best Director platter, becoming the first woman to be so recognized -- and the generally accepted front-runner to win the directing Oscar next month.

Only six times since the inception of the DGA Awards in 1948 has the guild's winner not also won the Oscar for Best Director; the last filmmaker to buck tradition was The Pianist director Roman Polanski, who usurped Rob Marshall's glory with a surprise Academy victory in 2003. There's the possibility that Cameron -- who won the award for Titanic in 1997 and whose current blockbuster should today surpass that earlier film's all-time domestic box-office record -- may yet saddle up his dark horse for the directors' race ahead, but it's likelier that he and Fox will target Best Picture and leave the other hardware to the ex. Who deserves it anyway.

Also among the weekend's DGA winners: Norman Jewison received the guild's lifetime achievement award, while Louie Psihoyos claimed Best Documentary director for The Cove. On the television side, Ross Katz took home the TV-movie award for Taking Chance, Leslie Linka Glatter won the dramatic series prize for the Mad Men episode "Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency" (a/k/a the infamous "lawn mower" episode), and Jason Winer won the comedic series award for the Modern Family pilot. Congrats to all, as always.

· 2009 DGA Awards [DGA]



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