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Producers Guild picks '12 Years a Slave' and 'Gravity' in rare tie for top feature film

Steve McQueen, right, Chiwetel Ejiofor, left, and Brad Pitt arrive at the 25th annual Producers Guild of America Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)

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Steve McQueen, right, Chiwetel Ejiofor, left, and Brad Pitt arrive at the 25th annual Producers Guild of America Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - For the past six years, every feature film chosen by the Producers Guild of America for its top honour has gone on to win the best-picture prize at the Academy Awards. Sunday night, Steve McQueen's historical epic "12 Years a Slave" and Alfonso Cuaron's space odyssey "Gravity" tied for the guild's highest honour.

While an Oscar tie is unlikely, the rare PGA split keeps the Academy Awards race wide open in one of the tightest three-way battles in years. It may have been shut out by the producers, but David O. Russell's con caper "American Hustle" still remains very much in the running following a week of big showings at the Golden Globes, Oscar nominations and Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Rounding out the 10 nominees in the PGA's feature category were "American Hustle," ''Blue Jasmine," ''Captain Phillips," ''Dallas Buyers Club," ''Gravity," ''Nebraska," ''Saving Mr. Banks," and "The Wolf of Wall Street."

With only the Directors Guild and Writers Guild awards left to go in the next two weeks, the Oscar race is heading into the home stretch when several thousand academy voters make their choices prior to the March 2 ceremony.

Many PGA members belong to the producers branch of the motion picture academy, hence the frequent alignment of the two groups' top feature film picks, including "No Country for Old Men" (2007), "Slum Dog Millionaire" (2008), "The Hurt Locker" (2009), "The King's Speech" (2010), "The Artist" (2011) and "Argo" (2012).

Other trophies presented Sunday night at the guild's 25th annual awards ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif., included "Frozen" for animated feature, "We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks" for documentary film, "Behind the Candelabra" for television movie or miniseries, "Breaking Bad" for TV drama series and "Modern Family" for TV comedy series.

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