Sunday, May 27, 2018
  • Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017
"La La Land" Wins Producers Guild Award, Gets Leg Up On Best Picture Oscar
Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in a scene from "La La Land" (photo by Dale Robinette/courtesy of Summit Entertainment and Lionsgate)
  • BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP)
  • --

“La La Land” is continuing to dance its way through Hollywood’s awards season, claiming top honors at the 28th annual Producers Guild Awards. 

The guild recognized the candy-colored musical with its Darryl F. Zanuck Award for theatrical motion picture production at a ceremony Saturday night (1/28) in Beverly Hills. “La La Land” won out over a field which also included “Arrival,” “Deadpool,” “Fences,” “Hacksaw Ridge,” “Hell or High Water,” “Hidden Figures,” “Lion,” “Manchester by the Sea” and “Moonlight.” The Oscar nominees for best picture announced earlier this past week echoed the producers’ best picture nominees, with the exception of “Deadpool,” which made the cut with producers but not the film academy.

For seven of the past eight years, the winner of the producers’ Zanuck prize has gone on to win best picture at the Academy Awards. Last year was an exception: “The Big Short” won the guild award, while “Spotlight” got the Oscar. Overall the winner of the Zanuck Award has matched the best picture Oscar 19 times in the 28-year history of the Producers Guild Awards.

But the guild’s celebration at the Beverly Hilton Hotel of the year’s outstanding film and television productions had a decidedly political tone, as President Donald Trump’s ban on refugees and visitors from several Muslim countries triggered protests in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Seattle and other cities.

“Our America is big, it is free, and it is open to dreamers of all races, all countries, all religions,” singer John Legend said as he introduced “La La Land” at Saturday’s untelevised ceremony. “Our vision of America is directly antithetical to that of President Trump. I want to specifically, tonight, reject his vision and affirm America has to be better than that.”

Ezra Edelman, producer and director of “O.J.: Made in America,” which claimed the guild’s documentary prize, echoed Legend’s sentiments.

“Please keep telling stories that are about our humanity,” he said.

Dustin Hoffman presented the night’s top prize. As producer Marc Platt accepted for “La La Land,” he said, “The power of cinema cannot be denied and has no borders ... We must believe love can change our lives, much as it can change the world.”

Other winners Saturday included “Zootopia” for animated feature, “Atlanta” for episodic television comedy and “Stranger Things” for episodic TV drama.

In addition to its competitive awards, the Producers Guild of America (PGA) presented special honors to producer James L. Brooks with the Norman Lear Achievement Award in Television; producer Megan Ellison with the Visionary Award; Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Motion Picture Group Chairman Tom Rothman with the Milestone Award; producer Irwin Winkler with the David O. Selznick Achievement Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures; and Focus Features’ “Loving” with the Stanley Kramer Award, which was accepted by producer Colin Firth on behalf of the film.

Here’s a rundown of Producers Guild Award winners in theatrical features and TV:


The Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures:
La La Land
Producers: Fred Berger, Jordan Horowitz, Marc Platt

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures:   
Producer: Clark Spencer
The Award for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures:
O.J.: Made in America
Producers:  Ezra Edelman, Caroline Waterlow


The David L. Wolper Award for Outstanding Producer of Long-Form Television:
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (Season 1)
Producers: Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski, Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Nina Jacobson, Brad Simpson, D.V. DeVincentis, Anthony Hemingway, Alexis Martin Woodall, John Travolta, Chip Vucelich

The Award for Outstanding Sports Program:
A TIE between
VICE World of Sports (Season 1)
Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel (Season 22)

The Award for Outstanding Digital Series:
Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee (Season 7, Season 8)

The Norman Felton Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama:
Stranger Things (Season 1)
Producers: Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer, Shawn Levy, Dan Cohen, Iain Paterson

The Danny Thomas Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Comedy:
Atlanta (Season 1)
Producers: Donald Glover, Dianne McGunigle, Paul Simms, Hiro Murai, Alex Orr

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Non-Fiction Television:
Making a Murderer (Season 1)
This show is in the process of being vetted for individual producer eligibility

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Competition Television:
The Voice (Season 9-11)
Producers: Audrey Morrissey, Jay Bienstock, Mark Burnett, John de Mol, Chad Hines, Lee Metzger, Kyra Thompson, Mike Yurchuk, Amanda Zucker, Carson Daly

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Live Entertainment & Talk Television:
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (Season 3)
Producers: Tim Carvell, John Oliver, Liz Stanton

The Award for Outstanding Children’s Program:
Sesame Street (Season 46)