Jordan Peele (‘Get Out’) will be first black Oscar winner of Best Original Screenplay, according to our experts

Get Out” is an unconventional Oscar contender. It’s a satirical horror movie that opened way back in February — not the kind of film academy voters normally go for, to say the least. But as of this writing the Expert film journalists we’ve polled say the film has pulled ahead in the crowded race for Best Original Screenplay, and if they’re right it would be historic: Jordan Peele would be the first black writer to win that category.

Three black writers have been nominated before in this category: Suzanne de Passe contended alongside co-writers Chris Clark and Terence McCloy for “Lady Sings the Blues” (1972). Then Spike Lee was nominated for “Do the Right Thing” (1989). And John Singleton made the cut for “Boyz n the Hood” (1991). Since then, multiple black writers have been nominated and won, but all in the Adapted Screenplay race: Geoffrey Fletcher (“Precious,” 2009) was the first black writer ever to win, followed by John Ridley (“12 Years a Slave,” 2013) and Barry Jenkins and Tarell Alvin McCraney (“Moonlight,” 2016).

There are currently 24 Experts making their picks, and they’re sharply divided, but currently 10 of them are picking Peele to win this race: Erik Davis (Fandango), Edward Douglas, Tim Gray (Variety), Andrea Mandell (USA Today), Scott Mantz (Access Hollywood), Jack Mathews (Gold Derby), Michael Musto (NewNowNext), Kevin Polowy (Yahoo), Christopher Rosen (Entertainment Weekly), and Peter Travers (Rolling Stone).

The momentum is certainly in Peele’s favor as he was awarded Best Screenplay by the Gotham Awards and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association. He also claimed Best First Film from the New York Film Critics Circle. And “Get Out” contends for five prizes at the Independent Spirit Awards including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay. Will all that lead to a historic Oscar push?

Be sure to make your Oscar nomination predictions so that Hollywood studio executives and top name stars can see how their films are faring in our Academy Awards odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on January 23. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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