Noms leaders have streaky record in Oscar best picture race

We went back 40 years to see how the films with the most Oscar nominations did when it came to winning best picture. Here’s what we found.

Best picture at the Oscars

Most noms that year (18): “The King’s Speech,” “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King,” “Chicago,” “Gladiator,” “American Beauty,” “Shakespeare in Love,” “Titanic,” “The English Patient,” “Braveheart,” “Forrest Gump,” “Schindler’s List,” “Danves with Wolves,” “Driving Miss Daisy,” “Rain Man,” “The Last Emperor,” “Terms of Endearment,” “Gandhi,” “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”

This year: “Lincoln”

Tied for most noms that year (12): “The Hurt Locker,” “No Country for Old Men,” “Unforgiven,” “Platoon,” “Out of Africa,” “Amadeus,” “Kramer vs. Kramer,” “The Deer Hunter,” “Rocky,” “The Godfather Part II,” “The Sting,” “The Godfather”

Second-most noms that year (4): “The Artist,” “Slumdog Millionaire,” “Crash,” “A Beautiful Mind”

This year: “Life of Pi”

Tied for second-most noms that year (1): “Million Dollar Baby”

Third- or fourth-most noms that year (5): “The Departed,” “The Silence of the Lambs,” “Chariots of Fire,” “Ordinary People,” “Annie Hall” (tied for fourth)

This year: “Les Miserables” and “Silver Linings Playbook”

Fifth-most noms that year: None

This year: “Argo”

To sum up, 30 of the past 40 best picture winners have at least tied for the most nominations in their winning year, and a film in fifth place hasn’t won at all, unless you count “Annie Hall,” which was tied with “The Goodbye Girl” for fourth place mong 1977 films.

Here’s one other note for “Argo,” which has seven total nominations. Seven films since 1972 have best picture with seven noms or fewer: “The Departed” (5), “Crash” (6), “Million Dollar Baby” (7), “The Silence of the Lambs” (7), “Chariots of Fire” (7), “Ordinary People” (6), “Annie Hall” (5).

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