Is winning the Golden Globe for Best Picture actually the worst thing that could have happened to Avatar? For years, people have trumpeted the Globes as reliable foreshadowers of the eventual Academy Award winners. And in the lead-acting categories, they have a decent track record as of late (last year being the exception, as Mickey Rourke won over Sean Penn). But in the Best Picture race, that hasn’t been true recently. Take a look at the Golden Globe winners of the last five years:

2009: Slumdog Millionaire & Vicky Cristina Barcelona

2008: Atonement & Sweeney Todd

2007: Babel & Dreamgirls

2006: Brokeback Mountain & Walk the Line

2005: The Aviator & Sideways

As you can see, only once in the last five years has one of the Globe winners (Slumdog, of course) gone on to take the Oscar as well. Meanwhile, the HFPA failed to acknowledge No Country for Old Men, The Departed, Crash, and Million Dollar Baby. Heck, Crash wasn’t even nominated for the Globe.

When you think about it, it’s silly to even expect the Globes and the Oscars to mirror each other—there’s absolutely no overlap between the voting bodies at all. One award is decided on by fewer than 100 quirky foreign journalists, and the other by more than 6,000 professionals in the film industry. And now, with The Hurt Locker picking up the Producers Guild prize, it’s certainly possible that they’ll have different winners this year as well. As of today, I’m still feeling an Avatar win for picture and Locker for director, but at this point, anything seems possible.

Image credit: Avatar: Weta