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‘Black Panther,’ ‘A Star Is Born’ lead a blockbuster-heavy slate of Producers Guild film award nominees

‘Black Panther,’ ‘A Star Is Born’ lead a blockbuster-heavy slate of Producers Guild film award nominees
Okoye (Danai Gurira) in a scene from Marvel's "Black Panther." (Marvel Studios)

A scattered film awards season continues to take shape as Hollywood’s filmmaking guilds begin to weigh in with their picks for the year’s best.

The Producers Guild of America unveiled its 10 nominations for the best film of 2018 on Friday including blockbusters “Black Panther” and “A Star Is Born” and critical favorites “Roma” and “The Favourite.”

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Those expected contenders were joined by a mix of popular hits and prestige films: “BlacKkKlansman,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Crazy Rich Asians,” “Green Book,” “A Quiet Place” and “Vice.”

Among the awards season players MIA are the Golden Globe-nominated “If Beale Street Could Talk” and “Mary Poppins Returns” and the underdog major studio releases “First Man” and “Widows,” which have both struggled mightily throughout the season.

The guild is generally considered a strong predictor of what films will wind up with best picture Oscar nominations — although the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has not had 10 nominees since 2011.

"First Man," starring Ryan Gosling, was one of the notable omissions in the Producers Guild's best picture category.
"First Man," starring Ryan Gosling, was one of the notable omissions in the Producers Guild's best picture category. (Daniel McFadden / Universal)

Last year, the PGA nominated 11 titles and only four ultimately missed out on best picture nominations: “The Big Sick,” “I, Tonya,” “Molly’s Game” and “Wonder Woman.” The motion picture academy in turn nominated “Darkest Hour” and “Phantom Thread,” which were both overlooked by the PGA. Guillermo del Toro’s romantic fantasy “The Shape of Water” went on to win both the PGA’s film prize and the Oscar.

This year’s blockbuster-heavy lineup fits with the PGA’s historical trend. Compared with the motion picture academy, the guild has a far stronger track record of nominating commercial hits. In addition to “Wonder Woman” last year, box office winners as diverse as “Deadpool,” “The Dark Knight,” “Straight Outta Compton,” “Bridesmaids,” “Star Trek,” “The Incredibles” and “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” all received guild recognition in the top film category but did not land a corresponding Oscar nomination.

In other film categories, the animated feature nominees are “Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch,” “Incredibles 2,” “Isle of Dogs,” “Ralph Breaks the Internet” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

Previously announced documentary nominations went to "The Dawn Wall," "Free Solo," "Hal," "Into the Okavango," "RBG," "Three Identical Strangers" and "Won't You Be My Neighbor?"

On the TV side, “The Americans,” “Better Call Saul,” “The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Ozark” and “This Is Us” were nominated in the episodic drama series category. “Atlanta,” “Barry,” “GLOW,” “The Good Place” and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” were singled out in the episodic comedy series category.

The Producers Guild recognized "The Americans" for its sixth and final season in the episodic drama field.
The Producers Guild recognized "The Americans" for its sixth and final season in the episodic drama field. (FX)

The nominees for limited series include “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story,” “Escape at Dannemora,” “Maniac,” “The Romanoffs” and “Sharp Objects.” “Fahrenheit 451,” “King Lear,” “My Dinner With Herve,” “Paterno” and “Sense8: Together Until the End” were recognized in the TV movie field.

The late Anthony Bourdain snagged a nomination in the nonfiction TV category for “Parts Unknown” alongside “30 for 30,” “Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath,” “Queer Eye” and “Wild Wild Country.”

“The Daily Show With Trevor Noah,” “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver,” “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” “Real Time With Bill Maher” and “Saturday Night Live” round out the live entertainment and talk television group. Nominees for the game and competition television field include “The Amazing Race,” “America’s Got Talent,” “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” “Top Chef” and “The Voice.”

This year’s PGA ceremony is set for Jan. 19, the weekend before Oscar nominations are revealed, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Special honors will go to Marvel Studios honcho and “Black Panther” producer Kevin Feige, actress Jane Fonda, writer-producer-showrunner Kenya Barris, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and veteran producer Toby Emmerich.

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