The various guilds continue to announce winners leading up to the Academy Awards. Following the cues of the Producers Guild, Screen Actors Guild, and the American Cinema Editors Guild, the Art Directors Guild have announced their picks for the top achievements in filmmaking in 2014. Now in their 19th year of handing out prizes, the Art Directors Guild (ADG) selects the year’s finest achievements in production design, which may prove as foreshadowing for that category at the Academy Awards. This year, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Birdman picked up prizes.
The Art Directors Awards are divided into three categories: period film, fantasy film, and contemporary film. Last year, the ADG selected The Great Gatsby (period film), Gravity (fantasy film), and Her (contemporary film) as their respective winners – all three films were nominated in the production design category at the Academy Awards and The Great Gatsby eventually ended up winning the prize. Period films, and especially lush, more-is-more type period films, tend to excel in this category at the Oscars. This could give the edge to The Grand Budapest Hotel, the only film of the three winners this year nominated for production design at the Oscars. This marks the first time in history a Wes Anderson film has competed in the production design race at the Academy Awards, an odd stat considering the abundance (and criticism) of art direction in his entire filmography.
Competing against The Grand Budapest Hotel for the period film ADG Award were Inherent Vice, The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything, and Unbroken. Guardians of the Galaxy won out over Captain America: The Winter Solder, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Interstellar, and Into the Woods. Birdman was up against American Sniper, Foxcatcher, Gone Girl, and Nightcrawler. The Oscar line-up consists of The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Imitation Game, Interstellar, Into the Woods and Mr. Turner. Full list of film winners below:
- BEST ART DIRECTION (Period Film): The Grand Budapest Hotel– Adam Stockhausen
- BEST ART DIRECTION (Fantasy Film): Guardians of the Galaxy– Charles Wood
- BEST ART DIRECTION (Contemporary Film): Birdman– Kevin Thompson