Ever since it’s Golden Globe win for Best Drama film, and the fact that it subsequently scored a leading 12 nominations in this years Academy Awards, the Best Picture Oscar would seem to be The Revenant‘s to lose. Well, the Producer’s Guild Of America or PGA just turned that idea on their head a little bit.

They decided to bestow their top honour on Adam McKay’s comedic drama The Big Short, a scappy little picture that is definitely worthy, but not so definitely an awards-bait movie like The Revenant. It didn’t do too badly with the Academy (5 nominations – Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor – Christian Bale, and Best Film Editing), but isn’t the typical movie that you expect to take the top prize.bigshort2A little bit of trivia to let you in on why the PGA group of voters is so significant with their Oscar predicting, just let me know if I lose you at any point. The last 8 years the PGA winner has gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar (which is a pretty good streak in anyone’s books), and in fact their pick has lined up with the Academy 19 times out of the last 25.

Still with me? Well a bunch of Oscar winners even have the PGA to thank for kickstarting their winning streak; such luminaries as The King’s Speech, The Hurt Locker, and last year’s winner Birdman had all seen losses at the precursor awards before riding a wave of support churned up by a PGA win.

So, what does a win for The Big Short at the PGA awards actually mean? Well, it means that it’s on the Academy’s radar at the very least. It’s that whole thing where once you hear something is good you’re more likely to watch it.. same thing happens with Academy voters. Expect those Big Short screeners to go directly to the top of the watch pile now.

Other guilds to weigh in include the Director’s Guild, where McKay has a shot if he can get past The Revenant‘s Alejandro González Iñárritu and The Martian’s Ridley Scott (who was passed over for the Oscars), and the Writer’s Guild, where The Big Short should triumph in the less crowded Comedy category. First up, all eyes will be on this weekend’s SAG (Screen Actor’s Guild) awards, where they give out their Best Picture equivalent Outstanding Cast In A Motion Picture. If The Big Short triumphs there as well, and it has stiff competition from Spotlight – another based-on-a-true-story drama, then it would seem that it’s their race to lose. 000210251hrBut in this crazy business of awards, nominations, and #OscarsSoWhite, the only winner that can be assured is the one standing with the golden statue on Feb 28th. Until then, the rest is just educated guessing.

THE 88TH ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS will be handed out February 28th.