Oscar Watch: Does Producers Guild Predict Best Picture?

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With the announcement of the Producers Guild Nominations earlier today, one could argue that of late the organization could be seen as a crystal ball for foreseeing Oscar Best Picture. Seven of the last ten PGA winners have gone on to win Best Picture, while the last six years in a row their winner has been Oscar’s top film. Those are some pretty impressive stats.

American Hustle Bradley Cooper Christian Bale

Now, there were a few notable omissions from the list of nominees who are vying for the Producers Guild top honor of the Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures -- their “Best Picture.” Inside Llewyn Davis, Fruitvale Station and The Butler failed to make the cut. But, we don’t think that means either will be missing from the Academy Awards nominations when they are revealed on January 16 at the crack of dawn here in Los Angeles.

What will be interesting is several days later when the Producers Guild announces their winner on January 19. For those who like to participate in Oscar pools, we would put whoever the organization chooses at the top of your list.

We agree that Inside Llewyn Davis, Fruitvale Station and The Butler will not win Best Picture at this year’s Academy Awards. But, Movie Fanatic does feel that they will most likely earn nominations. Given that 2013 was such a spectacular year for film (Check out our Top 10 Movies of 2013), all ten spots that the Academy can use will be filled. But, if Inside Llewyn Davis, The Butler and Fruitvale Station get nods, then which of the nominees for Producers Guild awards will be left out?

Blue Jasmine will surely result in a nod for star Cate Blanchett for Best Actress, but not for Best Picture. And we would be surprised if Dallas Buyers Club also scored a nod. It is worthy, don’t get us wrong. But, we would bet that Matthew McConaughey would be a lock for Best Actor and Jared Leto a lock for Best Supporting Actor.

Dallas Buyers Club Matthew McConaughey

The third spot is kind of a mystery, and Movie Fanatic thinks it will come down to one of the Tom Hanks movies that scored Producers Guild nominations. Either Saving Mr. Banks or Captain Phillips will get a Best Picture nod, but not both. Hanks could easily score a Best Actor nod for Captain Phillips and Best Supporting Actor for Saving Mr. Banks, but one of his films will fail to make the cut for the top honor.

The wild card in all of this, honestly, is The Butler. It feels like it is the Academy’s type of movie. But, it was released in the summer and sometimes voters forget about films that didn’t come out in the fall. Fruitvale Station arrived in the warmer months, yes, but like Beasts of the Southern Wild last year, the Academy will likely bring attention to a movie that didn’t get much. The Butler, with its $100 million box office take, certainly had its fair share of attention!

In the end, this edition of the Movie Fanatic Oscar Watch feels that when it comes to the Producers Guild, they are a crystal ball and whoever wins their “Best Picture” award on January 19 will be your Best Picture winner at the Academy Awards.

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