Women Dominate The Best Director Category For This Year’s Golden Globe Awards


Feb. 9 2021, Published 3:24 a.m. ET

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The nominations for the 2021 Golden Globe Awards have been released and women are breaking records for the category of Best Director. This year, three women are nominated to take home the treasured award. Emerald Fennell for directing Promising Young Woman, Regina King for One Night In Miami, and Chloe Zhao for Nomadland.

Best Director is usually a male-dominated category, in fact, the last time a woman was on the nomination list was when Ava DuVernay (Selma) was nominated, back in 2015. There has never been a time where more than one woman was nominated for Best Director. The last and only time a woman went home with a Golden Globe Award as Best Director was Barbra Streisand for the film Yentl, in 1984.

According to the Golden Globe Awards, there have only been 5 female directors to be nominated for a total of 7 motion picture nominations, until now. Barbra Streisand and Kathryn Bigelow are the only women who have been nominated twice. The other women-directed nominations in the history of the Golden Globes are Jane Campion for The Piano in 1994, Sofia Coppola for Lost in Translation in 2004, and Ava DuVernay  for Selma in 2015.

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The three women are competing against Aaron Sorkin  for The Trial of the Chicago 7, and  David Fincher for Mank. Aaron Sorkin is familiar with the award process as he has 9 nominations and 2 wins under his Golden Globe belt. Sorkin however, has never won for the category of Best Director. David Fincher continues his legacy with 4 nominations and a 2011 Best Director Golden Globe Award.

Although the Golden Globes will be a virtual event, the award show will air on Sunday, February 28th. Actress and comedians Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will host the award show, making it their fourth round at the 78th event, according to the Golden Globe Awards website. Fey and Poehler will be broadcasting from opposite sides of the country, Fey from New York and Poehler from California, another first for the award show.

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Earlier this year, Netflix reported that the Netlfix Original Bridgerton claimed the number one spot for their biggest hit. According to CNN, during the first 28 days of showing, about 82 million households watched the series. Fans took to Twitter as they wondered how Bridgerton had not been given a single nomination. Other entertaining and successful pieces that did not receive a nomination include I May Destroy You, Never Have I Ever, and Minari,  which does not qualify because the primary language is not English, even though the series is set and shot in America, and directed by an American.

Emerald Fennell is also nominated for the Best Screenplay, and Carey Mulligan is nominated for Best Actress for her work in Promising Young Woman. Fennell has never been nominated for a Golden Globe award before. Chloe Zhao is also nominated for Best Screenplay, with her first nominations ever at this award show. On the other hand, Regina King, director of One Night in Miami, is no stranger to the Golden Globes. King has a total of four nominations, and in 2019 she won the award for Best Supporting Actress in Motion Picture for her role in If Beale Street Could Talk.

According to the Center For The Study Of Women In Television & Film, women took up 16% of directors in the top 100 grossing films in 2020. More women than ever before are stepping into the director’s chair.

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By: Candy McClure

After earning my degree in Broadcast Television Production from Daytona State College, where I studied television writing, directing, and producing, I entered into the industry to continue my passion for writing entertaining, empowering, and educational pieces. During my time at the WDSCTV television station, work that I wrote, directed, and produced, aired on televisions across central Florida, in addition to my primary job functions, I have been recognized by producers for my commitment to being organized and individualistic. When I’m not glued to words on a laptop, you can find me glued to words on a page of a good mystery novel.

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