By Joey Magidson
Anyone who’s been following the Oscar race this year, especially after the nominations were announced, is well aware that some very surprising Best Director snubs occurred. Ben Affleck, Kathryn Bigelow and Tom Hooper have top-tier Best Picture hopefuls, but all three were left out in the cold for director. The same can be said for Quentin Tarantino, who also saw his film cited but not his own directorial work.
People have been flipping out over those Oscar omissions, but when you think about it, they’re only the latest in a long line of fine directorial efforts not rewarded by the Academy. With only five slots for Best Director, there are always going to be a group of directors snubbed for the prize. It’s the nature of a shortlist.
What you’ll see below are 10 directors who saw their films nominated for Best Picture but were snubbed by Oscar in Best Director. In a pair of cases, I came close to cheating by citing two films for the filmmakers, but I don’t think anyone here will mind too much. Some of the filmmakers listed will surprise you. Others won’t, but one thing is certain: They all deserved the nominations they didn’t receive.
Keep this in mind as we begin this look at some of the impressive names that Affleck, Bigelow, Hooper and Tarantino have joined. Also, we’re only looking at the last 50 years — I needed to cut things off somewhere, so that seemed like as good a number as any.