Golden Globe Nominations: Regina King, Chloé Zhao, & Emerald Fennell Land Best Director Nods, Make History

For the first time in its 78-year history, the Golden Globe Awards has recognized more than one woman in its Best Director category. Nominations for the 2021 edition of the awards ceremony were announced today, and Regina King, Chloé Zhao, and Emerald Fennell all landed Best Director nods.

King is being honored for “One Night in Miami,” the Oscar-winning actor’s feature directorial debut. Based on a true story, the drama is set in 1964 and sees Cassius Clay, later known as Muhammad Ali, being crowned as the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion and celebrating his win alongside Malcolm X, Jim Brown, and Sam Cooke.

Zhao is in the running for “Nomadland,” her third feature. The Frances McDormand-starrer tells the story of a woman who moves into her camping van and travels across the American West in the aftermath of the Great Recession.

Fennell landed a nom for “Promising Young Woman.” The “Crown” actor’s feature directorial debut sees Carey Mulligan playing a former med student who dedicates her life to hunting down sexual predators.

Women have been shut out of the Best Director race at the Globes for six years. The last woman to receive a nomination was Ava DuVernay for Martin Luther King Jr. biopic “Selma.” Prior to this year, just five women had ever been included in the category: DuVernay, Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker,” Sofia Coppola for “Lost in Translation,” Jane Campion for “The Piano,” and Barbra Streisand for “Yentl” and “The Prince of Tides.”

As Women and Hollywood Founder and Publisher Melissa Silverstein told The Hollywood Reporter, “To awards insiders, the Golden Globes are nothing like the Academy, but they do have one thing in common, only one woman has won the best director award. This year the Golden Globes took a step that the Academy has never done, which is to nominate multiple women for best director of a motion picture. They nominated a black woman, Regina King, an Asian woman, Chloe Zhao, and a white woman, Emerald Fennell. This is a moment that we should all remember and know that it has been a long time coming. The future that we have all dreamed of has become our present.”

Zhao and Fennell are also up for Best Screenplay, and “Nomadland” and “Promising Young Woman” are both nominated for Best Motion Picture, Drama.

McDormand and Mulligan scored Best Actress in a Drama nods. They are joined by “Ma Rainey Black Bottom’s” Viola Davis, “The United States vs. Billie Holiday’s” Andra Day, and “Pieces of a Woman’s” Vanessa Kirby.

Just one of the five titles in the Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical category is directed by a woman (Sia’s “Music”).

We were saddened by the Globes’ lack of love for “I May Destroy You,” Michaela Coel’s universally acclaimed sexual assault drama from HBO and BBC. The series landed exactly zero nominations. Also disappointing — to say the least — is the fact that none of the nominees in the Best Actress, TV Series, Drama; Best Actress, Limited Series or TV Movie; Best Actress, TV Series, Comedy; and Best Supporting Actress, TV categories are women of color. All 20 nominees are white women.

Head over to Vanity Fair to check out all of the nominees.

The Golden Globes ceremony will take place February 28. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are hosting.

February 3, 2021
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