Ben Affleck may be absent a nod at the Oscars, but he won the Directors Guild of America Award for Argo over the weekend. The 65th annual DGA ceremony took place at the Ray Dolby Ballroom in Hollywood, where the filmmaker delivered a humble speech to audiences: “I worked really, really hard to become the best director I could be, by putting in as [many] hours as I can, and banging my head against a wall, berating myself, lying to myself about whether it’s going to work. Basically, I got to a point where I was nominated for this award. And I don’t think this makes me a real director — but I think it means I’m on my way.”
Affleck has certainly come a long way since the days of I Killed My Lesbian Wife, Hung Her on a Meat Hook, and Now I Have a Three-Picture Deal at Disney. He made his filmmaking debut with the 1993 short — a biting satire about the creative process and the movie industry. Affleck disowned the project, stating: “It’s horrible. It’s atrocious. I knew I wanted to be a director, and I did a couple of short films, and this is the only one that haunts me. I’m not proud of it… It looks like it was made by someone who has no prospects, no promise.” We think it’s better than some freshman efforts by bigger names, but you can judge for yourself after watching the below clips. (NSFW — language and some gore.)
Coming Soon shared the full list of DGA nominees. You’ll see familiar names like Looper’s Rian Johnson, who won for his directing effort on AMC’s Breaking Bad (episode, “Fifty-One”).
EW indicates that this is the third time a DGA has gone to a filmmaker not up for Best Director at the Oscars. Ron Howard and Steven Spielberg came before Affleck for Apollo 13 and The Color Purple, respectively. Affleck’s movie, which dramatizes the Canadian government and CIA operation to extract six diplomats from Iran, became a hot topic of debate amongst film fans who stormed the Internet weeks ago with angry and frustrated thoughts about his Oscar snub. The actor turned director has since won best director and drama at the Golden Globes, a best ensemble nod from the Screen Actors Guild, and a best production credit from the Producers Guild of America.