The Directors Guild of America announced winners for its 66th annual awards show on Saturday, January 25 in a star-studded gala. Alfonso Cuaron took home the top prize in feature film category, thanks to his brilliant work "Gravity". Last year's winner Ben Affleck ("Argo") presented the award to the Mexican filmmaker.
The "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" helmer said as he accepted the award, "What you cannot see from up there is this bizarre experiment of nature that is the human experience. That experiment is what directors try to sort out with our films. Thankfully, that experience is as diverse as the films as these filmmakers make."
Though Cuaron was the victor, the other four nominees were also honored with a presentation and a medallion each at the DGAs. They were Steve McQueen ("12 Years a Slave"), David O. Russell ("American Hustle), Paul Greengrass ("Captain Phillips), and Martin Scorsese ("The Wolf of Wall Street").
In the documentary category, Jehane Noujaim won a prize for "The Square" beating Zachary Heinzerling ("Cutie and the Boxer"), Joshua Oppenheimer ("The Act of Killing"), Sarah Polley ("Stories We Tell"), and Lucy Walker ("The Crash Wheel").
Steven Soderbergh, meanwhile, was feted with the Robert B. Aldrich Award. DGA's current president Paris Barclay took the stage with two prior DGA presidents, Taylor Hackford and Michael Apted, to present the special prize. They said they didn't reveal the honoree until the gala because they were afraid the director who usually shied away from limelight would have chosen not to go if he'd known he'd be honored.
When taking the stage to collect the honor, the "Magic Mike" helmer revealed that he was reluctant to become a DGA member when he started out in his career but he said the group had become an important part of his life over the years. "I've been proud to be a part of it. It means a lot. Thank you," he said.
The Robert B. Aldrich Award was not the only honor Soderbergh took home that night. The director who retired from making movies also grabbed a prize in movies for television and miniseries category for "Behind the Candelabra" which aired on HBO.