41% Say Steven Spielberg Will Win Best Director Oscar for 'Lincoln'

Ang Lee Comes in Second With Just 10%: Poll

The Envelope Please: The Forward panned Steven Spielberg’s ‘Lincoln,’ but he tops a new poll of Oscar hopefuls.
The Envelope Please: The Forward panned Steven Spielberg’s ‘Lincoln,’ but he tops a new poll of Oscar hopefuls.

By Reuters

Published January 30, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

American filmmaker Steven Spielberg is clear favorite among the public to win the best director award for his film about President Abraham Lincoln at the Academy Awards this year, a Reuters poll showed on Wednesday.

While the race to win best film at the Feb. 24 ceremony was shaken up by “Argo” stealing the thunder of “Lincoln” at two award ceremonies last weekend, the best director statuette was deemed destined for one man.

Spielberg, 66, who has been nominated seven times for best director at the Oscars and won twice - for the World War Two dramas “Schindler’s List” in 1993 and “Saving Private Ryan” in 1998 - was seen as far ahead in the all-male field of five.

A Reuters Ipsos poll of 1,641 Americans found 41 percent thought Spielberg should win and 38 percent said he was most likely to win for his U.S. Civil War-era drama in which British actor Daniel Day-Lewis plays Lincoln.

Almost half of the respondents to the survey conducted Friday through Tuesday were unsure who should or was most likely to be voted best director. The accuracy of the poll uses a statistical measure called a “credibility interval” and is precise to within 2.8 percentage points.

The online poll comes before the Directors Guild of America awards on Saturday in Los Angeles. Since 1948, there have been only six occasions where the winner of the DGA Award for Feature Film has not gone on to win the Oscar for best director.

But this year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, whose members choose Oscar winners, overlooked the directors of four of the year’s biggest movies - Ben Affleck (“Argo”), Kathryn Bigelow (“Zero Dark Thirty”), Quentin Tarantino (“Django Unchained”) and Tom Hopper (“Les Miserables”) - opening the possibility of a rare split in February in the best film and best director categories.

Betting agencies also have earmarked Spielberg as clear favorite, with William Hill offering odds of 1-5 on Spielberg.

“Our theory is that Spielberg will win best director but not best film,” said Rupert Adams, a spokesman for bookmaker William Hill. “If you listen to what people are saying it is that ‘Lincoln’ is a brilliant film in terms of direction but it is not that exciting to watch unlike ‘Argo.’”

Ang Lee, with his 3-D film adaptation of the best-selling novel “Life of Pi” about an Indian boy adrift at sea with a tiger, was ranked second in the Reuters poll with about one in 10 respondents saying he should or was most likely to win.

The Taiwanese director won the Academy Award for best director in 2005 for the gay-themed Western romance “Brokeback Mountain.”

David O. Russell with the quirky comedy “Silver Linings Playbook” was rated third in the poll with about 5 percent.

The two surprise contenders in the race ranked fourth and fifth: Benh Zeitlin, 30, with his first feature, “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” and Austrian director Michael Haneke with the French-language drama “Armour” about illness and old age.

The exclusion of Bigelow for her film about the hunt for Osama bin Laden has been controversial in the run-up to the 85th Academy Awards. Bigelow, 61, is the only woman to win a best director Oscar, for “The Hurt Locker” in 2009.

Affleck, 40, whose Iran hostage thriller “Argo” swept the board at last weekend’s Hollywood awards shows, was also notable by his absence, as were Hooper and Tarantino. However, all four of their movies are in the running for best film at the Oscars.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.