"Les Miserables" is the early frontrunner to win Best Picture at the Oscars, according to the experts polled by Gold Derby, and it may even end up setting two historic records.
Pundits predict the Tom Hooper-directed flick will win Best Supporting Actress (Anne Hathaway), Art Direction, Best Song ("Suddenly") and Sound Mixing. Overall, expect "Les Mis" to reap 12 to 16 bids. Currently, the record is 14 held by "All About Eve" (1950) and "Titanic" (1997). If "Les Mis" beats "Lincoln" to reap the most noms this year, that'll be an encouraging sign since the movie with the most nominations wins Best Picture more than two-thirds of the time.
"Les Miserables" could also set a record for most acting bids in one film. That distinction is currently shared by nine flicks that reaped five: "All About Eve" (1950), "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967), "From Here to Eternity" (1953), "Godfather, Part II" (1974), "Mrs. Miniver" (1942), "Network" (1976), "On the Waterfront" (1954), "Peyton Place" (1957) and "Tom Jones" (1963). "Les Mis" will probably get at least three: Hugh Jackman (lead), and Anne Hathaway and Eddie Redmayne in supporting. Three other possibilities include Russell Crowe, Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter, all in second-tier slots.
"Les Miserables" has the perfect pedigree to be a major Oscar threat. As a Broadway show in 1987, it won eight Tonys, including Best Musical, and now it's brought to the screen by Hooper, who directed Oscar's 2010 Best Picture champ "The King's Speech." However, other classic musicals like "Sweeney Todd" and "Dreamgirls" failed to be nominated when they made the leap to the silver screen in recent years. In fact, no tuner has been nominated for Best Picture since "Chicago" won in 2002.
Eleven of Gold Derby's 26 pundits predict "Les Miserables" will prevail in the top Oscar race: Edward Douglas (Coming Soon), Pete Hammond (Deadline), Dave Karger (Fandango), Tariq Khan (Fox News), Keith Simanton (IMDB), Alex Suskind (AOL Moviefone), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone), Jeffrey Wells (Hollywood Elsewhere) and me. See their full rankings here
When predictions are combined and translated into racetrack odds, "Les Miserables" leads 9 to 1, followed by "Argo" (6/1), "Lincoln" (6/1), "Silver Linings Playbook" (8/1) and "Zero Dark Thirty" (9/1). You can see complete odds breakdown here.