Sturla Gunnarrsson's Rare Birds took four prizes as the Directors Guild of Canada launched its first annual awards in Toronto.

The film, a Newfoundland-set comedy starring William Hurt, received the prizes for Outstanding Achievement in a Feature Film and Outstanding Achievement in Direction as well as picture editing and production design. The prize for best television movies or mini-series went to After The Harvest, directed by Jeremy Podeswa.

The guild, which represents Canadian directors, editors and production designers among other crafts, also presented a lifetime achievement award to long-time member Norman Jewison. Presenters at the evening gala included Canadian filmmakers Jerry Ciccoritti, Allan King and Patricia Rozema.