- Revenant director, Inarritu has won an award for directing Revenant at the Directors Guild award (DGA)
- Inarritu is the first mexican director to win back-to-back DGA awards
- Revenant has 12 nominations for this year's Oscars
Alejandro Inarritu, director of Revenant movie has won the top directing award at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) awards for The Revenant.
The award comes to push him further to winning an award at the Oscars,where the movie has received nominations. The Revenant, starring Leonardo Di Caprio as a frontiersman fighting for survival, leads the Oscars race with 12 nominations, including best director.
For Inarritu, Saturday night's accolade makes the Mexican the first director to win back-to-back DGA awards.
Past DGA award winners have often gone on to claim the best director Oscar and the best film category. Inarritu won the DGA award for Birdman in 2015 and then won the Oscars double.
The DGA is the industry's leading group of film and TV directors and its opinion carries a lot of weight. To date, there have been only seven occasions when the DGA winner has not then won the subsequent Academy Award.
The group also chose Matthew Heineman as best documentary maker for Cartel Land. Heineman's film focuses on vigilante groups fighting drug cartels on both sides of the US/Mexican border.
Heineman said: "I hope that this film will give voice to those trapped by the cycle of violence in hopes that one day the cycle will end."
Inarritu was notably moved when picking up his trophy at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.He first acknowledged his father, who died two years ago, saying: "I think he's getting some business up there to make this happen and I miss him a lot."
He went on to add: "This hug, this embrace you're giving to me today is going to a whole country, a whole Latin American community in this country. The people who live here contribute a lot to this country."
Inarritu has already won the Golden Globe for best director for the Revenant and he is nominated for the directing Bafta but despite The Revenant's leading position in the Oscars race, this year the DGA award was considered hard to call as each of the leading industry guilds has championed a different film.