SAG Awards experts: Battle for Best Film Ensemble

Eight of our Oscarologists have weighed in with their predictions for the Screen Actors Guild Awards. They are deeply divided as to what will win Best Film Ensemble on Jan. 18 at the 20th annual edition of these kudos bestowed by the actors union. 

Five of them forecast victory for “American Hustle,” which can boast of a cast that has racked up nine Oscar nominations (and two wins) between them. That support gives it leading odds of 8 to 11 to take this prize.

Three of the other four nominees each land in the top spot on one of the individual rankings of our Experts.

Of this trio, a pair — “August: Osage County” and “The Butler” — have slightly better odds of 6 to 1 than the other — “12 Years a Slave” at 13/2 — because they rank higher on the lists of the Experts. The fifth nominee — “Dallas Buyers Club” — has odds of 100 to 1. 

Compare these standings to the Oscars where “American Hustle” is ranked third behind both “12 Years a Slave” and “Gravity.” As that latter film is primarily a solo turn for Sandra Bullock, it was not expected to reap a SAG ensemble bid. 

Globes experts: ’12 Years a Slave’ solid frontrunner for Best Drama Picture

Globes experts: ‘American Hustle’ way ahead to win Comedy/Musical Picture

This precursor prize does not have the strongest track record at forecasting the eventual Best Picture winner at the Oscars. In the first 18 years of this award, SAG presaged the Oscar champ just nine times though seven of those were in the last 11 years. However, it did foresee two of Oscar’s biggest upsets: “Shakespeare in Love” over “Saving Private Ryan” in 1998, and “Crash” over “Brokeback Mountain” in 2005.

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