The Civil War saga "Lincoln," the musical "Les Miserables" and the Osama bin Laden thriller "Zero Dark Thirty" are among the nominees announced Wednesday for the top honor from the Producers Guild of America.
Other best-picture contenders are the Iran hostage-crisis thriller "Argo"; the low-budget critical favorite "Beasts of the Southern Wild"; the slave-turned-bounty-hunter saga "Django Unchained"; the shipwreck story "Life of Pi"; the first-love tale "Moonrise Kingdom"; the lost-souls romance "Silver Linings Playbook"; and the James Bond adventure "Skyfall."
Walt Disney dominated the guild's animation category with three of the five nominees: "Brave," ''Frankenweenie" and "Wreck-It Ralph." The other nominees are Focus Features' "ParaNorman" and Paramount's "Rise of the Guardians."
Along with honors from other Hollywood professional groups such as actors, directors and writers guilds, the producer prizes help sort out contenders for the Academy Awards. Those nominations come out Jan. 10.
The guild, an association of Hollywood producers, hands out its 24th annual prizes Jan. 26. The big winner often goes on to claim the best-picture honor at the Oscars, which follow on Feb. 24.
Previously announced nominees by the Producers Guild for best documentary are "A People Uncounted," ''The Gatekeepers," ''The Island President," ''The Other Dream Team" and "Searching for Sugar Man."
— Long-form television: "American Horror Story," ''The Dust Bowl," ''Game Change," ''Hatfields & McCoys," ''Sherlock."