I’d like to thank the academy — and New York City cab riders.

Yellow-taxi passengers are voting for their favorite Oscar contenders in a new, first-of-its kind survey on the TV screens in the back of every cab.

The riding public can cast a vote in five categories — Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Animated Feature Film.

As of yesterday, riders had given Steven Spielberg’s epic biopic, “Lincoln,” a lock on Best Picture.

Twenty-eight percent of the more than 21,000 voters predicted that “Lincoln” would win.

The second favorite was Kathryn Bigelow’s gritty “Zero Dark Thirty,” which garnered 17 percent of the vote.


That film’s strawberry-blond star Jessica Chastain — who plays a CIA officer chasing terror monster Osama bin Laden — leads the Best Actress field with 34 percent of the taxi vote.

Jennifer Lawrence, of “Silver Linings Playbook,” got 27 percent of the vote and is in second place so far.

Daniel Day-Lewis’ portrayal of Abraham Lincoln propelled him to the front of the Best Actor pack with 44 percent of the vote.

He was followed by “Les Misérables” star Hugh Jackman who had 23 percent.

In addition to Best Picture and Best Actor, cab riders also think that Spielberg will nab Best Director for “Lincoln.”

He had scored 46 percent of the vote as of yesterday.

But, in a surprise, 30 percent of riders picked Ang Lee as their choice for Best Director, for “Life of Pi.”

Although critically acclaimed, the visually dazzling film fared better at box-office markets overseas than it did in the United States.

Taxi & Limousine Commissioner David Yassky — a big movie buff — said the survey was a way to engage passengers.

“New Yorkers love to talk about movies, and I figured they’d like this,” he said.

It’s also a chance to show off the city’s impeccable taste in films, he said.

“No disrespect to LA, but I’ll take the judgment of New York City taxi passengers over academy members any day,” he said.

“Lincoln” is his picture choice.

To vote, click on the survey button on the monitor in the back of all yellow cabs.

Results will be updated on the TLC Web page every few days.

The annual awards show airs on Feb. 24.


Category: Blog, New York City

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