The Producers Guild of America has a pretty good track record presaging the Best Picture winner at the Oscars. Since it began handiing out prizes in 1989, It first feted 16 of the 23 Oscar champs, including the last six in a row.
But how does it do when it comes to forecasting which Documentary Feature will win the Academy Award?
Since the PGA began giving out this award in 2007, it has honored three of the six films that went on to win the Oscar while two of its champs were snubbed by the academy and one contended there but was defeated.
2007: “Sicko” (lost Oscar to “Taxi to the Dark Side”)
2008: “Man on Wire”
2009: “The Cove”
2010: “Waiting for ‘Superman'” (not nominated at Oscars)
2011: “Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of a Tribe Called Quest” (not nominated at Oscars)
2012: “Searching for Sugar Man”
And just how many of the PGA nominees reaped Oscar bids?
Of the 28 PGA contenders over the past six years, only eight have gone on to compete at the Oscars.
Of five 2007 PGA nominees: “Sicko” contends at Oscars
Of three 2008 PGA nominees: “Man on Wire” wins Oscar and “Trouble the Water” contends
Of four 2009 PGA nominees: “The Cove” wins Oscar and “Burma VJ” contends
Of six 2010 PGA nominees: “Inside Job” wins Oscar
Of five 2011 PGA nominees: none contend at Oscars
Of five 2012 PGA nominees: “Searching for Sugar Man” wins Oscar and “The Gatekeepers” contends
This year’s five nominees for the PGA prize are:
“Far Out Isn’t Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story” — Brad Bernstein‘s exploration of the dual life of a children’s book illustrator who also creates erotica;
“Life According to Sam” — Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine follow one boy’s fight against progeria, the early aging disease;
“A Place at the Table” — Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush probe the problem of hunger in America;
“We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks” — Alex Gibney details the history of this website;
“Which Way Is the Front Line From Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington” — Sebastian Junger‘s tribute to the photojournalist who was killed in Libya in 2011.
The PGA will reveal the eligible producers of these films on Jan. 2 when it unveils the nominees in the other film and TV categories. Winners will be announced during a Jan. 19 ceremony at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
The academy will announce the 15 Documentary Features that made it to the semi-finals in early December. Until then, you can predict the winner of the Documentary Short Oscar below using our easy drag-and-drop menu.