DGA docu noms are a first

Virgin territory for all 5 hopefuls

Five first-time nominees drew DGA documentary nominations Tuesday, while the Hungry Man and MJZ production companies each figured in a pair of the guild awards' noms for commercials.

Nominated for directorial achievement in documentary for 2006 are Amy Berg, "Deliver Us From Evil" (Lionsgate Films); Michael Glawogger, "Workingman's Death" (Lotus Films, Quinte Film); James Longley, "Iraq in Fragments" (Typecast Pictures/HBO Documentary Films); Arunas Matelis, "Before Flying Back to the Earth" (Studio Nominum); and Jean-Henri Meunier, "Ici Najac, a Vous la Terre" (Little Bear).

"At its best, documentary filmmaking elevates the disparate elements of lives and events into a narrative that is both compelling and insightful," DGA president Michael Apted said. "It takes a skilled director to achieve this feat, and this year's five nominees exemplify that devotion and storytelling expertise."

Apted also praised the commercials nominees.

"It takes great skill to tell a compelling story in under 30-60 seconds," he said. "These five commercial directors have mastered the format, using their talent, craft and imagination to provide us with some of the most innovative filmmaking out there today."

The Hungry Man nominees include Bryan Buckley for "Animal," a commercial for client American Express, and "More Mayo" and "Manthem" for Burger King, along with David Gray for "Transvestite" and "Mugger" for the Tribeca Film Festival, "Jesus Throws" for Full Tilt Poker and "Born" for eBay.

MJZ nominees included Dante Ariola for "Snowball" for Travelers Insurance and "First Taste" for Coca Cola, as well as Tom Kuntz for "Fruit Pants" for Altoids and "Trade" for Skittles.

Also nominated was Joe Pytka of the Pytka production company for "Clydesdale American Dream" for Budweiser, "Preparation" for the Walt Disney Co. and "Where Were You" for the World Trade Center Memorial.

Winners in all categories of the DGA Awards will be feted at the program's 59th annual gala, set for Feb. 3 at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Century City.
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