AFI Top 10 Preview: Will American Film Institute foretell Oscar Best Picture nominations?

On Thursday (Dec. 8), the American Film Institute is set to release its list of the top 10 homegrown films of 2016. The AFI has a strong track record at previewing the Best Picture line-up at the Oscars. Since the academy expanded that category in 2009, the AFI has previewed 51 of the 57 nominees that were American-made; that translates into a staggering 90% success rate.

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The AFI missed these six domestic productions that went on to make the cut with the academy:

2009: “Avatar” and “Inglourious Basterds”
2012: “Django Unchained”
2013: “Dallas Buyers Club”
2014: “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
2015 : “The Revenant”

The AFI does not honor foreign-made films and six of them have reaped Best Picture bids in the last seven years. Two of these — “The King’s Speech” (2010) and “The Artist” (2011) — won the top prize. The other four imports that impressed academy members were:

2012: “Amour”
2013: “Philomena”
2014: “The Theory of Everything”
2015: “Brooklyn”

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The AFI jury is comprised of scholars, film and television artists, critics and AFI Trustees. Members consider the following criteria when determining the honor roll of 10 American films:

Best advance the art of the moving image;
enhance the rich cultural heritage of America’s art form;
inspire audiences and artists alike; and
make a mark on American society.

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Be sure to make your Oscar predictions. How do you think “La La Land” will do with academy voters? Weigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how this film is faring in our Oscar odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on January 24 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.

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