3 Reasons Why 'Slumdog Millionaire' is Guaranteed a Best Picture Oscar NodIf or when the U.S. Treasury stumbles too badly to stop America's slide into recession, we'll always have Fox Searchlight to bail us out. The mini-major had another specialty smash last weekend with Slumdog Millionaire, the Mumbai-based genre-bender whose $35,043 per-screen average was the fourth best of any film this year, trailing The Dark Knight by less than $1,300 per location. And if a quick scan of the Searchlight record tells us anything, the numbers will continue to astound — and they portend even better things for the Oscar race.With critical raves in part pushing it to a $416,000 opening since last Wednesday, Slumdog is Searchlight's fifth best opening average in the last five years. The three titles just above it: 2007: Juno ($59,124 per screen; $143.5 million cumulative gross) 2006: Little Miss Sunshine ($52,999 per screen; $59.9 million cumulative) 2004: Sideways ($51,760 per screen; $71.5 million cumulative) All of which went on to earn Oscar nominations for Best Picture, and all of which won for Best Screenplay. Of course I Heart Huckabees trumped them all with $73,044 per screen, and we all know how that turned out. Still! Clear spots in your Oscar pools, and let the Obama transition team know where they'll find the real economic stimulus. You can thank us later.