“All Right, Mr. Deville, I am Ready for my Close Up” Award for Best Director
Previous Winners: A.G. Inarritu (Birdman), Tim McCarthy (Spotlight), Damien Chazelle (La La Land), Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman), Alfonso Cuarón (Roma), Anthony and Joe Russo (Avengers: Endgame), Spike Lee (Da 5 Bloods), Jon Watt (Spider-Man: No Way Home)
2022 had a bunch of excellent directors doing a lot of great work. I had a large list of potential directors for the “All Right, Mr. Deville, I am Ready for my Close Up” Award.
Honorable Mention: I will start off by mentioning Baz Luhrmann with his Elvis work. It was a fun and well shot biopic. Dan Kusan and Daniel Scheinert are together known as The Daniels and they created one of the top films of the year with Everything Everywhere All at Once. We got a brand new look at Gotham City with Matt Reeves‘ vision of The Batman. Guillermo del Toro brought a new concept to the Pinocchio story. The Banshees of Inisherin is an Oscar favorite and Martin McDonagh may be a director nominee there. He gets a shout out in the EYG world. James Cameron did an amazing job on his sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water. Another giant epic film was The Woman King and Gina Prince-Bythewood did an amazing job with the massive battle scenes. Rian Johnson has been known to be divisive among the geek world, but that is unfair. His work is always great as it is in Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery. Sam Raimi made Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness into an amazing Sam Raimi-movie. Top Gun: Maverick was a huge smash and Joseph Kosinski knocked it out of the park. One of the best foreign films this year was RRR and S.S. Rajamouli had huge dance and battle scenes to work. Another Oscar favorite is Steven Spielberg for The Fabelmans, but he is well down my list. The Menu is absolutely awesome and Mark Mylad brought some amazing tension. Finally, Matthew Warchus gave us a wonderful film, Matilda the Musical, which is now on Netflix and EVERYONE should go watch that immediately.
The 2022 winner of Best Director is…
No director had to deal with more than Ryan Coogler did. Not only is he responsible for directing the sequel to a culturally significant film in Black Panther, but he also had to fit the new film into the gigantic MCU franchise. Then, as the script was finished, the lead of the movie, Chadwick Boseman, passed away from cancer… something that caught everyone off guard. They had to redo the entire script, but only after he, along with Kevin Feige and the Marvel Studios folks, decided not to recast. That decision stirred up the haters on the internet. He had to deal with those people who were going to hate the idea of Shuri being Black Panther for reasons that only the internet can justify. And the final film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, had to be a way to honor Chadwick Boseman while still having a solid movie. Ryan Coogler was able to be hugely successful while having all these problems.
Congrats to Ryan Coogler on his amazing achievement despite it being one that came under terrible tragic circumstances.