Awards Buzz: ‘La La Land,’ ‘Lion’ and ‘Zootopia’ Win Big Over the Weekend

La La Land

Buzz has increased for the leading award contenders. Of course, this doesn’t mean these films are locked to win Academy Awards, but since they’re voted upon by experienced industry professionals, some of whom are also voting for the Oscars, the awards given out in the last couple of days are certainly good indicators.

The Directors Guild of America has more than 16,000 members. Awards were first handed out in 1948. Nowadays, awards are given for accomplishments in movies, television, documentaries and commercials, as well as special guild service awards. Damien Chazelle (La La Land) won the award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2016.

Garth Davis (Lion) received the award for first-time feature-film director. Based on a true story, the movie follows a little boy in India who is separated from his family, placed in an orphanage and then adopted by a kindly couple in Australia. The balance of the movie deals with his long search as an adult to find his place of origin.

Ezra Edelman earned recognition for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary for O.J.: Made in America, a sprawling yet tightly focused movie that tackles the subject of racism in the U.S.


The American Society of Cinematographers also held its annual awards ceremony recently. The organization recognizes achievements in cinematography, which is the art of motion-picture photography.

All five nominees for its films in the theatrical release category have also been nominated for Academy Awards Greig Fraser (Lion) received this year’s award for theatrical release. Other nominees included James Laxton (Moonlight), Rodrigo Prieto (Silence), Linus Sandgren (La La Land) and Bradford Young (Arrival).


The International Animated Film Society is an organization that began hosting an awards ceremony in 1972, handing out Annie Awards. The event honors and celebrates achievements in animation in both production and individual achievement categories; that includes animated effects in live-action productions.

This year, Zootopia was recognized as best animated feature; other nominees included Finding Dory, Kubo and the Two Strings, Kung Fu Panda 3 and Moana. The Red Turtle won the award for Best Animated Feature – Independent.