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2018 Oscars: Does Best Picture champ have to win an acting award first?

2018 Oscars: Does Best Picture champ have to win an acting award first?

The Shape of Water” numbers three acting bids among its leading 13 Academy Awards nominations for lead Sally Hawkins and supporting players Richard Jenkins and Octavia Spencer. According to our exclusive Oscar odds none of them is predicted to win on March 4. Should that scenario play out, does that mean that their film won’t win Best Picture?

Not so fast.

While 53 of the 89 Best Picture champs to date include an Oscar-winning performance, 36 of them (40%) did not win any acting awards. And among those three dozen winners are four of the eight films — “The Hurt Locker” (2009), “Argo” (2012), “Birdman” (2015) and “Spotlight” (2016) — decided by preferential ballot under the newly expanded slate of Best Picture nominees.

Surprisingly, an even dozen of the Best Picture winners did not even reap any acting nominations. That is welcome news for “Arrival,” which does not number an acting bid among its eight nominations. However, four of those films

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