‘Les Miserables’ pulls ahead in Oscar’s Best Picture race; ‘Argo’ surges

Miserable no more! “Les Miserables” just pulled ahead of “Silver Linings Playbook” in the Best Picture race based upon the predictions of top experts polled by Gold Derby.

Back on Sept. 26, 8 pundits out of 23 picked “Silver Linings Playbook” to prevail, giving it 5-to-1 odds. Place position: “Lincoln” (6 pundits). Show: “Les Miz” (4 gurus).

Now “Les Miz” leads with 8 experts. “Argo” follows with 5 and “Silver Linings Playbook” ties “Lincoln” with 4. Three weeks ago, “Argo” had only one pundit’s full support, so its new momentum amounts to a surge.

Predicting a big win for “Les Miz”: Edward Douglas (Comingsoon), Tariq Khan (Fox News), Sean O’Connell (Hollywood News), Christopher Rosen (Huffington Post), Keith Simanton (IMDB), Alex Suskind (Moviefone), Jeff Wells (Hollywood Elsewhere) and me.

“Argo” backers: Pete Hammond (Deadline Hollywood), Scott Feinberg (Hollywood Reporter), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Sasha Stone (Awards Daily) and Susan Wloszczyna (USA Today).

Still behind “Silver Linings”: Thelma Adams (Yahoo), Steve Pond (The Wrap), Dave Karger and Chuck Walton (Fandango).

Loyal to “Lincoln”: Matt Atchity (RottenTomatoes), Richard Horgan (Mediabistro/FishbowlLA),  Kevin Polowy (NextMovie) and Glenn Whipp (LA Times).

Anne Thompson (Thompson on Hollywood/ Indiewire) picks “Life of Pi,” Guy Lodge (In Contention/Hitfix) opts for “The Master” and Michael Musto (Village Voice) chooses “Zero Dark Thirty.”

See the predix of all pundits polled by Gold Derby here. See racetrack odds here.

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