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Sunday, 11 March, 2001, 10:03 GMT
Oscar boost for Tiger
Hidden Tiger
Tiger beat off stiff competition for award
Director Ang Lee has won a top Hollywood award for his film, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

The Taiwanese-born director won the Directors' Guild of America (DGA) award for "outstanding directorial achievement in feature film" for the martial arts epic.

Ang Lee
Ang Lee: Does Oscar success beckon?
""Wow, this is too much. The timing is good. Thank you from the bottom of my heart," said Lee as he received the award.

The award has given Lee an important boost ahead of the Oscars, where he has been nominated in the best director category.

Oscar indicator

He beat Cameron Crowe who was nominated for Almost Famous, Ridley Scott who was nominated for Gladiator, and Steven Soderbergh, who was nominated for Traffic and Erin Brockovich.

Traditionally the Directors' Guild of America awards have served as an early indicator of Oscar success.

Ridley Scott
Scott: Beaten to award
Since 1949, the winner at the awards has gone on to win the Oscar for best director in all but four years.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is also up for best film of the year and best foreign film of the year in the Oscars.

"In my wildest dreams, I never thought this movie would go so far,"' said Lee, who also won a Golden Globe award for the film.

The nominees will stay on tenterhooks until the Oscars ceremony on 25 March, hosted by comic actor Steve Martin.

The DGA also lauded Jack Valenti, president and chief executive of the Motion Picture Association of America, who received the Honorary Life Member award.

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09 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Oscars race: The final showdown
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