The Directors Guild of America has unveiled their nominees for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2009. The majority of the picks listed are all shoe ins for the Oscars and have popped up on the winning end of several other guild awards. This year, history has been made with the nomination of Precious helmer Lee Daniels, while two other directors make their DGA nomination debuts…

The five nominees chosen for their work last year don’t solely take on the honors by themselves, they have an entire directing team that also gets recognized. Kathryn Bigelow is one of the few women who’s managed to creep into the male dominated profession with her nod, while Lee Daniels is the first African American to ever get nominated by the Guild. The duo alongside Jason Reitman are all first time nominees, while James Cameron and Quentin Tarantino have earned nods before. Cameron won the top award in 1997 for Titanic, and Tarantino was nominated in 1994 for Pulp Fiction.

Here’s the full list including the managing teams that worked alongside each director.

Kathryn Bigelow
The Hurt Locker
Ms. Bigelow’s Directorial Team:

  • Unit Production Manager: Tony Mark
  • First Assistant Director: David Ticotin
  • First Assistant Director (Canadian Unit): Lee Cleary

James Cameron
Mr. Cameron’s Directorial Team:

  • Unit Production Manager: Colin Wilson
  • First Assistant Director: Josh McLaglen
  • Second Assistant Director/Additional Unit First Assistant Director: Maria Battle Campbell

Lee Daniels

Precious: Based on the novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire
Mr. Daniels’ Directorial Team:

  • Unit Production Manager: Tony Hernandez
  • First Assistant Director: Chip Signore
  • Second Assistant Director: Tracey Hinds
  • Second Second Assistant Director: Michael “Boogie”Pinckney
  • Additional Unit Production Manager: Patrick D. Gibbons
  • Additional First Assistant Director: Tom Fatone
  • Additional Second Assistant Directors: Kim Thompson, Mirashyam Blakeslee
  • Location Manager: Gregory Routt

Jason Reitman
Up In The Air
Mr. Reitman’s Directorial Team:

  • Unit Production Manager: Michael Beugg
  • First Assistant Director: Jason Blumenfeld
  • Second Assistant Director: Sonia Bhalla
  • Assistant Unit Production Manager: Samson Mucke
  • Second Second Assistant Director: Joseph Payton
  • Additional Second Assistant Director: Heather L. Hogan

Quentin Tarantino
Inglourious Basterds
Mr. Tarantino’s Directorial Team:

  • Unit Production Manager: Gregor Wilson
  • Unit Production Manager (Germany): Michael Scheel
  • First Assistant Director: Carlos Fidel
  • Second Assistant Director: Miguel Angelo Pate
  • Second Second Assistant Directors: Jill Moriarty, Tanja Däberitz

According to Variety, “the DGA’s Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film has matched the Best Director Academy Award in all but six years since 1948 including last year when Danny Boyle won both trophies for Slumdog Millionaire.” With this year’s current nominees it sounds like a fair assessment of what we’ll see on the nomination ballots next month for the Oscars. It’s hard to choose who I like more because they’re all so deserving. Damn the Director’s Guild, and their thorough selection process.

The DGA trophy’s will be given out on January 30th.

Who do you think has the competitive edge on the competition for the top DGA award? Who should win?