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What do the L.A. film critics awards tell us about the Oscars?

By Paul Sheehan
Dec 08 2013 15:03 pm
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For those fans of "12 Years a Slave" fear not: the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. has a spotty record at crystalballing the Oscars. (Read full report of their winners here.)

Last year, the group named "Amour" as the Best Picture of the year. While that French-language film reaped an Oscar bid, the winner of the top Academy Award was "Argo."

In its 38-year history, LAFCA has only predicted seven winners of the Best Picture Oscar. The last of these was Kathryn Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker" in 2009. Prior to that it was way back in 1993 when "Schindler's List" ran the board, winning NYFCC, NBR and LAFCA before triumphing at the Oscars. 

And Bigelow's win in 2009 was the last of the 11 Best Director Oscar champs that LAFCA foresaw. Last year's LA champ -- Paul Thomas Anderson ("The Master") -- wasn't even nominated at the Oscars.

The LA critics do much better presaging who will win the acting awards at the Oscars.

They've gotten Best Actor right 21 out of 38 times, most recently in 2010 with Colin Firth ("The King's Speech"). Last year's LA winner Joaquin Phoenix was a surprise Oscar nominee for "The Master. However, 2011 LA champ Michael Fassbender was not nominated by the academy for any of his leading performances ("A Dangerous Method," "Jane Eyre," "Shame" and "X-Men: First Class").

A lucky thirteen of the LAFCA Best Actress winners went on to claim the Oscar, including last year's double champ Jennifer Lawrence ("Silver Linings Playbook"). She had tied at LA with eventual Oscar rival Emmanuelle Riva ("Amour"). 

Fourteen of their choices for Supporting Actor repeated at the Oscars, including Christopher Plummer ("Beginners") in 2011. However, last year's winner with the LA crowd -- Dwight Henry ("Beasts of the Southern Wild") did not reap an Oscar bid. 

And thirteen of the group's Supporting Actress winners picked up matching Oscar bookends, the most recent of which was 2009 double champ Monique ("Precious"). Last year, LAFCA cited Amy Adams who went on to contend at the Oscars for "The Master." In 2011,  Jessica Chastain won over the LA critics with six films: "Coriolanus," "The Debt," "The Help," "Take Shelter," "Texas Killing Fields" and "The Tree of Life." She contended at the Oscars for "The Help" but lost to co-star Octavia Spencer

What do you think will win Best Picture at the Oscars? Vote below using our easy drag-and-drop menu. 

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