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Directors Guild gives top award to Mexican director Inarritu

  • INVISION VIA AP

    Leonardo DiCaprio, left, star of “The Revenant,” poses backstage with the film’s director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu at the 68th Directors Guild of America Awards at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza tonight in Los Angeles.

  • INVISION VIA AP

    Director Tom McCarthy, left, a feature film award nominee for “Spotlight,” poses backstage with presenter Rachel McAdams at the 68th Directors Guild of America Awards at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza tonight in Los Angeles.

  • INVISION VIA AP

    Thomas McDermott, center, recipient of the Franklin J. Schaffner Achievement Award, poses backstage with presenters Christian Jules Le Blanc, left, and Michelle Stafford at the 68th Directors Guild of America Awards at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza tonight in Los Angeles.

LOS ANGELES » Mexican director Alejandro Inarritu won the top feature film directing award Saturday from the Directors Guild of America for his work on “The Revenant.”

Inarritu won the same award last year for this direction of “Birdman,” a film about the struggles of a Hollywood actor. He won an Oscar for best directing for that film.

Inarritu competed against Tom McCarthy (“Spotlight”), Adam McKay (“The Big Short”), George Miller (“Mad Max: Fury Road”) and Ridley Scott (“The Martian”).

The annual Directors Guild of America Awards can herald the eventual Oscar winners in the best director and picture categories.

Saturday’s ceremony also offered a telling look at who’s working behind the camera in Hollywood amid the industry’s ongoing discussion about diversity.

Women comprise about 28 percent of nominees for the awards that recognize achievement in directing in various formats, from commercials to TV shows to feature films. There are 14 women and eight non-white nominees among the slate of 47 directors.

“I’m the only woman on both of the feature lists, so that feels like a lot of responsibility,” said Marielle Heller, who joined the Directors Guild after making “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” for which she is nominated for achievement by a first-time feature filmmaker. “I’m hoping that next year we’ll be at least half of that list, and then by the next year, there shouldn’t be any men on that list, right?”

Heller lost to “Ex-Machina” director Alex Garland in the inaugural category.

Women, who represented just over 4 percent of directors of the top-grossing films from 2002 to 2013, have better representation in the television categories. Of the six nominees for directing a TV miniseries or movie, three are women — Angela Bassett (“Whitney”), Laurie Collyer (“The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe”) and Dee Rees (“Bessie”) — the most of any DGA Awards category. They face Kenny Leon and Matthew Diamond (“The Wiz Live!”) and Paul Haggis (“Show Me a Hero”).

Amy Schumer is nominated for co-directing her Comedy Central show, and Chris Rock is nominated for directing Schumer’s “Live at the Apollo” HBO special.

Awards in all categories will be presented Saturday night during a dinner ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza hotel in Los Angeles.

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AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr contributed to this report.

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