The American Film Institute delayed announcing its annual list of the Top 10 films of the year so that jurors could see "Star Wars: The Force Awakens." They must have thought the wait worth it as that sci-fi epic made the cut along with eight of our 10 frontrunners for Best Picture at the Oscars. "Star Wars" does not number among those … yet. But like the AFI, our experts have just seen this seventh film in the franchise and it could well figure in their updated predictions in the days to come. See the complete list below and check out the corresponding list of the Top 10 TV programs right here.
The other film from outside our top 10 Best Picture contenders that made it onto the AFI list is "Straight Outta Compton," which also surprised with a SAG Ensemble nomination.
Missing from the AFI roster is "The Revenant," which we currently rank second behind "Spotlight" and "Brooklyn," which was ineligible as it was not American made.
TOP 10 AMERICAN FILMS OF 2015
However, such snubs do not rules these films out of contention. Just last year, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" made it into Oscar's eight-film Best Picture lineup despite being shunned by the AFI. (Also numbering among the eight was the British import "The Theory of Everything.")
In 2013, the AFI foresaw seven of the nine Best Picture nominees, missing only "Dallas Buyers Club" and the Brit hit "Philomena."
In 2012, the AFI named seven of the eventual nine Best Picture nominees, missing only the Gallic import "Amour" and the late release "Django Unchained."
In 2011, eventual Oscar Best Picture winner "The Artist" was ineligible as it was a French film but it received honorary mention by the AFI.
In 2010, the AFI named nine of the eventual 10 Best Picture nominees, with only the champ — British-made "The King's Speech" — missing from the list. It too received a special prize.
In 2009, the AFI snubbed eventual Best Picture nominees "Avatar" and "Inglourious Basterds."
These films, along with the winners of the TV awards, will be feted during a Jan. 8 luncheon in Los Angeles.
Make your Oscar predictions beginning with Best Picture to the right or below.
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"Star Wars" photo credit: Walt Disney Pictures
"Inside Out" photo credit: Disney/Pixar