Since the Producers Guild of America started giving out prizes 28 years ago, its pick for best pic has gone on to take home the top Academy Award a whopping 20 times, including last year’s double dipper “The Shape of Water.” And the helmer of that film, Guillermo del Toro, won Best Director at the Oscars adding to the trophy that he had picked up from the DGA.
The Directors Guild of America has been handing out awards since 1948 and aligned itself with the academy calendar in 1950. Since then, all but seven of its winners earned bragging rights as the director of the Best Picture winner at the Oscars.
This year, the PGA picked “Green Book” while the DGA went with Alfonso Cuaron (“Roma”). So, which of these films has the edge to take home Best Picture? Remember, the PGA uses the same method of voting, the preferential ballot, that the academy adopted for its top award when it expanded the Best Picture roster in 2010.
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The first six PGA winners of this bigger field of 10 contenders went on to repeat at the Oscars. (The PGA went with “The Big Short” in 2016 while the academy favored “Spotlight” while in 2017 the guild embraced “La La Land” while the Oscar went, eventually, to “Moonlight.”)
In the nine years since the Best Picture ballot doubled in size, the DGA has tapped eight helmers who went on to win Oscars themselves with five of them able to boast that they directed the Best Picture winner to boot. The ninth DGA winner, Ben Affleck, was snubbed by the directors branch of the academy but his film, “Argo,” did take home the top Academy Award.
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There are three instances where the DGA was off as a bellwether for Best Picture. In 2014, Cuaron won for “Gravity” but the Best Picture Oscar went to “12 Years a Slave,” which had tied with it at the PGA. While the PGA had pointed the way in that instance, it was of no help in predicting the Best Picture winner in the other two years when the DGA got it wrong.
In 2016, “The Big Short” won at the PGA, Alejandro G. Inarritu won at both the DGA and Oscars for “The Revenant” but “Spotlight,” which had won Best Ensemble at SAG, was named Best Picture. And in 2017, Damien Chazelle took home both the DGA and Academy Award for directing but his film lost, eventually, to “Moonlight.” The SAG ensemble winner that year was “Hidden Figures.”
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their films and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on Feb. 24. And join in the fierce debate over the 2019 Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our movie forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.