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‘Once Upon a Time…’ and ‘1917’ boosted by producer, director nods

(AFP)

Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood” and Sam Mendes’s “1917” boosted their awards charges Tuesday, collecting key nominations from Hollywood’s producing and directing guilds just days after bagging the top Golden Globes prizes.

Tarantino’s homage to 1960s Tinseltown and Mendes’s World War I thriller were among 10 films shortlisted by the Producers Guild of America.

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The PGA gong is a reasonably reliable bellwether for the best picture prize at the Oscars, which are barely a month away. It has predicted 21 of the last 30 Academy Award winners, including the last two years with “Green Book” and “The Shape of Water.”

There were also PGA nods for dark comic book tale “Joker,” starring Joaquin Phoenix, and Martin Scorsese’s much-vaunted crime epic “The Irishman,” which left the Globes empty-handed.

South Korean black comedy “Parasite,” from Bong Joon-ho, was the only foreign language film to make the cut, while Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women” was the sole female-helmed movie. 

The Directors Guild of America also release its shortlist of five Tuesday, with its top prize often an indicator for the best director Oscar.

Mendes, who won the best director Globe on Sunday, will face Scorsese, Tarantino, Bong, and “Jojo Rabbit” director Taika Waititi.

“Jojo,” a Nazi satire set during the Second World War, has left critics lukewarm, but won the influential Toronto film festival’s top honors. 

No women featured on the DGA shortlist, although three female directors earned separate first-time director nominations.

It follows the #BAFTAsSoWhite hashtag, which began trending earlier Tuesday after Britain’s version of the Academy was criticized for a chronic lack of diversity in its own award nominations. 

BAFTA film chief Marc Samuelson described the lack of diversity as “infuriating.” 

The PGA awards will be held in Hollywood on January 18, followed by the DGAs on January 25.

The all-important Oscars conclude the awards calendar on February 9, with nominations due out this Monday.

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