After the Golden Globes two weeks ago, let’s go to the other awards ceremony that awards both TV and movie performances, the Screen Actors Guild. With thousand of members that comprise the SAG-AFTRA group, the SAG Awards is an award given to actors by their own peers. This year, let’s see who’d end up winning the nude Actor trophy in 13 different categories.
THEATRICAL MOTION PICTURES
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
The Grand Budapest Hotel
The Imitation Game
The Theory of Everything
PREDICTION: Boyhood. This one is quite tricky. There are years when the SAG goes their own way and award the most ensemble-y nominee of the group (see: Sideways, American Hustle, The Help) but then there are years where the default Best Picture frontrunner just skates by (see: Argo, Slumdog Millionaire, No Country for Old Men), I think this year we’d get the latter and have the four-member cast of Boyhood take the top trophy.
ALTERNATE: Birdman. But still, we can see a scenario where Birdman emerges as the top winner here. After all, it’s a film about actors, and that might resonate well in this branch. With three individual acting nominations and an ensemble full of many prominent Hollywood names in it, a case can be made for them winning.
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
STEVE CARELL / John du Pont – “FOXCATCHER” (Sony Pictures Classics)
BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH / Alan Turing – “THE IMITATION GAME” (The Weinstein Company)
JAKE GYLLENHAAL / Louis Bloom – “NIGHTCRAWLER” (Open Road Films)
MICHAEL KEATON / Riggan – “BIRDMAN” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
EDDIE REDMAYNE / Stephen Hawking – “THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING” (Focus Features)
PREDICTION: Michael Keaton, Birdman. Keaton fits the veteran bill that this category loves to reward. He plays a struggling has-been which a lot would surely find relate-able. Plus, him getting this break at the state of his career is every actor’s inspiring story. This is very crucial to Keaton. If he loses this on Sunday, then it’s over for him at the Oscars.
ALTERNATE: Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything. He has BAFTA wrapped around his little finger already, so if he wins this one, then he’d surely be ahead of Keaton as Oscar comes in. This game is closer than what we probably think, and he’s very much into the race. Remember that his film scored an Ensemble nod even if it’s basically him and co-star Jones on the forefront.
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
JENNIFER ANISTON / Claire Bennett – “CAKE” (Cinelou Films)
FELICITY JONES / Jane Hawking – “THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING” (Focus Features)
JULIANNE MOORE / Alice Howland – “STILL ALICE” (Sony Pictures Classics)
ROSAMUND PIKE / Amy Dunne – “GONE GIRL” (20th Century Fox)
REESE WITHERSPOON / Cheryl Strayed – “WILD” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
PREDICTION: Julianne Moore, Still Alice. Let’s just stick with the veteran who hasn’t won this category yet. It’s basically a smooth train ride all the way to the Oscar so just prepare your speeches, Jules.
ALTERNATE: Jennifer Aniston, Cake. Bleh who cares if she was Oscar snubbed. When half of the voters are from the TV actors guild, Rachel Green can surely still rake ’em votes.
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
ROBERT DUVALL / Joseph Palmer – “THE JUDGE” (Warner Bros. Pictures)
ETHAN HAWKE / Mason, Sr. – “BOYHOOD” (IFC Films)
EDWARD NORTON / Mike – “BIRDMAN” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
MARK RUFFALO / Dave Schultz – “FOXCATCHER” (Sony Pictures Classics)
J.K. SIMMONS / Fletcher – “WHIPLASH” (Sony Pictures Classics)
PREDICTION: J.K. Simmons, Whiplash. After working the circuit during majority of his career, a coronation of some sort for this long time hardworking character actor at the SAG is very much fitting.
ALTERNATE: Edward Norton, Birdman. Maybe a lot of these voters can remember a thing or two from Norton’s character no? He’s the alternate, albeit a very weak one.
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
PATRICIA ARQUETTE / Olivia – “BOYHOOD” (IFC Films)
KEIRA KNIGHTLEY / Joan Clarke – “THE IMITATION GAME” (The Weinstein Company)
EMMA STONE / Sam – “BIRDMAN” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
MERYL STREEP / The Witch – “INTO THE WOODS” (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
NAOMI WATTS / Daka – “ST. VINCENT” (The Weinstein Company)
PREDICTION: Patricia Arquette, Boyhood. There isn’t even any competition anymore for this longtime working actress as she’ll just glide all the way to Oscar night.
ALTERNATE: Emma Stone, Birdman. Just because she’s the biggest name and the only possibility for a surge of Birdman love in the guilds.
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
ADRIEN BRODY / Harry Houdini – “HOUDINI” (History)
BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH / Sherlock Holmes – “SHERLOCK: HIS LAST VOW” (PBS)
RICHARD JENKINS / Henry Kitteridge – “OLIVE KITTERIDGE” (HBO)
MARK RUFFALO / Ned Weeks – “THE NORMAL HEART” (HBO)
BILLY BOB THORNTON / Lorne Malvo – “FARGO” (FX)
PREDICTION:Billy Bob Thornton, Fargo. He’s the only Fargo acting nomination this year so that might be a bit of a reach, but there seems to be passion for Thornton’s Lorne Malvo, and this is a pretty weak competition he has this year.
ALTERNATE: Mark Ruffalo, The Normal Heart. After losing the Emmy and the Golden Globe, the whole of Normal Heart simply isn’t just resonating well with voters. But who knows, maybe this can be a substitute award since he’s not winning Film Supporting Actor.
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
ELLEN BURSTYN / Olivia Foxworth – “FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC” (Lifetime)
MAGGIE GYLLENHAAL / Nessa Stein – “THE HONORABLE WOMAN” (SundanceTV)
FRANCES McDORMAND / Olive Kitteridge – “OLIVE KITTERIDGE” (HBO)
JULIA ROBERTS / Dr. Emma Brookner – “THE NORMAL HEART” (HBO)
CICELY TYSON / Carrie Watts – “THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL” (Lifetime)
PREDICTION: Frances McDormand, Olive Kitteridge. I’m really not sure with this one as I had her pegged for the Globe only to see her lose, but she’s a respected veteran who has won Best Actress for Fargo in 1997 so there’s at least a precedent.
ALTERNATE: Maggie Gyllenhaal, The Honorable Woman. Or it can just be like the Globes where Maggie does a repeat making her a strong case at the Emmys this year.
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
STEVE BUSCEMI / Enoch “Nucky” Thompson – “BOARDWALK EMPIRE” (HBO)
PETER DINKLAGE / Tyrion Lannister – “GAME OF THRONES” (HBO)
WOODY HARRELSON / Martin Hart – “TRUE DETECTIVE” (HBO)
MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY / Rust Cohle – “TRUE DETECTIVE” (HBO)
KEVIN SPACEY / Francis Underwood – “HOUSE OF CARDS” (Netflix)
PREDICTION: Matthew McConaughey, True Detective. So I’ve predicted McConaighey for the Emmy only to see him lose to Bryan Cranston. Then I’ve predicted him for the Golden Globe where he then lost to Billy Bob Thornton. I don’t even know why I’m predicting him for a third time. Maybe I’m jinxing him actually.
ALTERNATE: Kevin Spacey, House of Cards. After his Golden Globe win two weeks ago, is SAG following suit? If the voters aren’t really up for some McConaughey crowning, expect 2x Oscar winner Kevin Spacey to benefit from it.
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
CLAIRE DANES / Carrie Mathison – “HOMELAND” (Showtime)
VIOLA DAVIS / Annalise Keating – “HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER” (ABC)
JULIANNA MARGULIES / Alicia Florrick – “THE GOOD WIFE” (CBS)
TATIANA MASLANY / Sarah/Coxima/Alison/Rachel/Helena/Tony/Jennifer and Various Others – “ORPHAN BLACK” (BBC America)
MAGGIE SMITH / Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham – “DOWNTON ABBEY” (PBS)
ROBIN WRIGHT / Claire Underwood – “HOUSE OF CARDS” (Netflix)
PREDICTION: Viola Davis, How to Get Away with Murder. I’m really shocked by her nomination considering how newer performances don’t easily get nominated that quick here, but she seems to be an actor’s actor type of performer who generate command and passion from her peers.
ALTERNATE: Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey. Or might as well just stick with the current (still a no show) winner.
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
Game of Thrones
House of Cards
PREDICTION: Downton Abbey. None of these really strikes to me as a winner. Boardwalk has won twice before and isn’t winning here for sure. Homeland hasn’t but it has ran past its course. Game of Thrones doesn’t necessarily scream a best ensemble winner template even if it has a large ensemble. Thus I’m sticking with the Brits who pulled off this upset win in 2012.
ALTERNATE: House of Cards. If not them, then let’s just go with the only new nominee from the bunch, even if it’s basically the Kevin and Robin show.
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
TY BURRELL / Phil Dunphy – “MODERN FAMILY ” (ABC)
LOUIS C.K. / Louie – “LOUIE” (FX)
WILLIAM H. MACY / Frank Gallagher – “SHAMELESS” (Showtime)
JIM PARSONS / Sheldon Cooper – “THE BIG BANG THEORY” (CBS)
ERIC STONESTREET / Cameron Tucker – “MODERN FAMILY” (ABC)
PREDICTION: Ty Burrell, Modern Family. With no strong frontrunner here plus the fact that they love repeat winners in their TV categories, let’s just stick with the only man who gave Alec Baldwin in 30 Rock his only SAG loss.
ALTERNATE: William H. Macy, Shameless. Macy is the veteran of this group, and if there’s a lot of name checking here, he’d be one who’d benefit the most.
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
UZO ADUBA / Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren – “ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK” (Netflix)
JULIE BOWEN / Claire Dunphy – “MODERN FAMILY” (ABC)
EDIE FALCO / Jackie Peyton – “NURSE JACKIE” (Showtime)
JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUS / Vice President Selina Meyer – “VEEP” (HBO)
AMY POEHLER / Leslie Knope – “PARKS AND RECREATION” (NBC)
PREDICTION: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep. This doesn’t scream to me as a one-time winner only so an easy repeat win for the current champ.
ALTERNATE: Uzo Aduba, Orange is the New Black. When a striking scene-stealer makes some pop culture waves, the SAG usually bites (see Sandra Oh and Chandra Wilson in Grey’s Anatomy), but if the Globes didn’t even bite to the Aduba bandwagon, it would take more than that to overcome Julia’s run.
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
The Big Bang Theory
Brooklyn Nine Nine
Orange is the New Black
PREDICTION: Orange is the New Black. For some reason, this seems like the Matthew McConaughey thing again. I predicted it at the Emmys only to lose to Modern Family, then I went with it at the Globes because it’s such a Globes-y thing to do to reward it and they went with Transparent. Maybe the 40 group ensemble would be enough to finally secure a major win for the show?
ALTERNATE: Modern Family. Say what you want, but this ensemble still works six seasons after. They have a perfect 5/5 record at the SAGs and if there’s one show who’ll break that record, it’s this.
You can talk to me about this on Twitter: @nikowl