This year’s SAG Awards predictions look a bit different from last month’s Golden Globe picks. Four of the Golden Globe winners—Andra Day, Jodie Foster, Sacha Baron Cohen (for Borat), and Rosamund Pike—missed the cut with their fellow thesps. That number is awfully, but as the only actor of the four nominated at the Oscars, Day could still be in play since SAG voters cast their nominations very, very early and Billie Holiday was very, very late to the game.
The SAG Awards are an annual highlight for Oscar watchers, not just because they’re all about the stars. The actors represent the biggest portion of Academy voters. They can swing a race. Just look at last year’s zany upset that catapulted Parasite from dark horse to major threat. Or when Crash changed the game for the Oscars entirely with a full-throttle campaign that targeted actors, and ultimately left frontrunner Brokeback Mountain 0 for 4 at the SAGs and upset on Oscar night. Maybe amid calls to forget about the Golden Globes, it’s time to upgrade the SAG Awards’ significance on the campaign trail.
To cheer our favourite performances of the year and jeer Jared Leto once again, members of the That Shelf team assembled their SAG Awards predictions and picks. Participants could abstain in any category in which they hadn’t seen enough contenders or had no opinion. Making their SAG Awards predictions this round were Colin Biggs, Courtney Small, Daniel Grant, Emma Badame, Manuel Betancourt, Pat Mullen, and Shane Slater.
SAG Award Predictions and Picks
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
The long-held statistic that a Best Picture Oscar winner was also a SAG ensemble nominee has fallen by the wayside. Both The Shape of Water and Green Book won the former while missing the latter. Nomadland shouldn’t worry too much about going into the show without this one. Consensus favours The Trial of the Chicago 7 for its sprawling cast and Sorkinese showboating. Courtroom dramas offer ACTING aplenty. Ditto Ma Rainey, which has some of the best actors in the world shouting over one another, but might have to settle for a foregone win for Chadwick Boseman. Da 5 Bloods and One Night in Miami, on the other hand, missed some individual nominations that should have been no-brainers. (Delroy Lindo, anyone?) Unlike Chicago, though, Ma Rainey, Bloods, and Miami aren’t Best Picture Oscar nominees. Only once has a non-Best Picture nominee won here: 1996’s The Birdcage.
But there’s the saying that there’s acting you see and acting you don’t see. If voters prefer the latter, they might go for the heartfelt Minari. Unlike the other challengers, it performed as expected, scoring individual nominations for Steven Yeun and Yuh-jung Youn. If any film wants to prove itself Nomadland’s challenger for the final stretch, now’s the time.
Da 5 Bloods: Daniel
Minari: Bil, Courtney
The Trial of the Chicago 7: Colin, Emma, Manuel, Pat, Shane
Da 5 Bloods: Daniel, Courtney
Minari: Emma, Manuel, Pat
One Night in Miami: Colin
The Trial of the Chicago 7: Shane
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
We’re all saying this is T’Challa for the win. Best Actor might be the only race that feels safely locked up on the acting front.
Chadwick Boseman: everyone
Riz Ahmed: Courtney, Emma, Manuel, Rachel
Chadwick Boseman: Bil, Colin, Shane
Anthony Hopkins: Pat
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
Without either of the (surprise) Golden Globe winners in the mix, this race could go any way. Oddly, it features a list of contenders one could have predicted in November. After her fellow Brits weirdly snubbed her, this is Carey Mulligan’s last chance to pick up steam, while Viola Davis could pull an upset since her film is the only one with an ensemble nod, despite all the other films save Nomadland being heavy-hitters on the cast front. On the other hand, McDormand’s performance carries nearly every frame of Nomadland as she rebounds emotions and reacts to non-professional actors. It’s hard to imagine her fellow actors dismissing the performance for seeming “too easy” as the lazier critics have suggested. The only thing working against McDormand, really, is that she won three years ago.
Viola Davis: Manuel, Shane
Frances McDormand: Bil, Courtney, Daniel, Emma, Pat
Carey Mulligan: Colin
Viola Davis: Bil
Vanessa Kirby: Daniel
Frances McDormand: Courtney, Pat, Shane
Carey Mulligan: Colin, Emma, Manuel
This for that:
Bil says: Swap out Amy Adams for Carrie Coon in The Nest
Colin says: Swap out Amy Adams for Elisabeth Moss in The Invisible Man
Emma says: Swap out Amy Adams for Andra Day in The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Pat says: Swap out Amy Adams for Michelle Pfeiffer in French Exit
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
The nominees: Chadwick Boseman, Da 5 Bloods; Sacha Baron Cohen, The Trial of the Chicago Seven; Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah; Jared Leto, The Little Things; Leslie Odom, Jr. One Night in Miami
The Daniel Kaluuya train continues! At this point, the only thing stopping him from an Oscar win is vote-splitting with his Oscar-nominated co-star Lakeith Stanfield.
Daniel Kaluuya: everyone
Daniel Kaluuya: everyone
This for that:
Bil says: Swap out Chadwick Boseman and replace him with Da 5 Bloods’ Clark Peters
Emma says: Swap out Jared Leo (because REALLY) for Alan Kim in Minari or Kingsley Ben-Adir in One Night in Miami
Pat says: Swap out Jared Leto (“because REALLY,” indeed!) and replace him with Stanley Tucci in Supernova
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
SAG skews much younger than the Academy, so here’s a case where Maria Bakalova could rebound after losing the Golden Globe. But actors could also see Borat more as improve than acting. (Although, frankly, it’s more likely that they’ll recognize the mix of bravery and comedic chops that pulled it off.) If they don’t swing for Bakalova, there’s Yuh-jung Youn to carry the Minari love or Glenn Close to edge her way towards her presumptive let’s-get-this-over-with Oscar win. Close’s Hillbilly Elegy co-star Amy Adams was one of the biggest surprises among the nominees. That bodes well for Close, considering how freaking terrible the film is.
Maria Bakalova: Bil, Pat, Daniel, Emma, Shane
Glenn Close: Colin
Olivia Colman: Manuel
Yuh-jung Youn: Courtney
Maria Bakalova: Colin, Courtney
Yuh-jung Youn: Daniel, Emma, Manuel, Pat, Shane
Helena Zengel: Bil
Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture
A bit of a toss-up. Does the film with the most stunts or biggest action sequences prevail? Anyone placing their chips on Chicago 7 is really betting big, though.
Da 5 Bloods: Manuel, Pat
Mulan: Bil, Courtney, Daniel, Emma, Shane
Wonder Woman 1984: Colin
Da 5 Bloods: Colin, Emma, Manuel, Pat
News of the World: Bil
Wonder Woman 1984: Courtney
SAG Awards Predictions and Picks: TV Categories
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
The nominees: Bill Camp, The Queen’s Gambit; Daveed Diggs, Hamilton; Hugh Grant, The Undoing; Ethan Hawke, The Good Lord Bird; Mark Ruffalo, I Know this Much Is True
After winning an Emmy and a Golden Globe for his performance in the bleak mini-series I Know this Much Is True, Ruffalo may be one of the safer bets of the night.
Bill Camp: Colin
Daveed Diggs: Manuel
Mark Ruffalo: Daniel, Emma, Pat, Shane
Daveed Diggs: Pat
Ethan Hawke: Colin, Manuel, Shane
Mark Ruffalo: Daniel, Emma
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
The nominees: Cate Blanchett, Mrs. America; Michaela Cole, I Will Destroy You; Nicole Kidman, The Undoing; Anya Taylor-Joy, The Queen’s Gambit; Kerry Washington, Little Fires Everywhere
Anya Taylor-Joy won the Globe, but Twitter nearly burned the house down when Michaela Cole wasn’t nominated at the Globes. All that attention could have inspired voters to look closer at her performance.
Anya Taylor-Joy: everyone
Michaela Cole: Colin, Daniel, Emma, Manuel, Shane
Nicole Kidman’s green coat: Pat
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
With five overall nominations this year and a win in the category last year, The Crown should repeat on its best season yet. It helps that the series had two iconic roles with Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher, with both stars nailing the parts.
The Crown: Colin, Daniel, Emma, Manuel, Pat, Shane
Lovecraft Country: Courtney
Better Call Saul: Colin
The Crown: Emma, Pat, Shane
Lovecraft Country: Courtney, Manuel
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
The nominees: Jason Bateman, Ozark; Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us; Josh O’Connor, The Crown; Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul; René-Jean Page, Bridgerton
This one’s a bit of a toss-up. Our group gives a slight edge to Josh O’Connor for his turn as Prince Charles. It’s not a particularly flattering take on the character, which seems doubly spot-on after that Oprah interview.
Jason Bateman: Colin, Manuel
Josh O’Connor: Emma, Pat, Shane
Bob Odenkirk: Daniel
Jason Bateman: Daniel
Josh O’Connor: Emma, Pat
Bob Odenkirk: Colin, Shane
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in Drama Series
The nominees: Gillian Anderson, The Crown; Olivia Colman, The Crown; Emma Corrin, The Crown; Julia Garner, Ozark; Laura Linney, Ozark
Well, it’s safe to say someone from The Crown or Ozark is winning, but who? Emma Corrin and Gillian Anderson are going head to head after wins at the Golden Globes and Critics Choice Awards. Lead performances tend to trump supporting turns here, but Anderson’s take on Thatcher is extra juicy. Alternatively, the three Crown stars could split the vote and help team Ozark, but that seems less likely given the heat for The Crown this year. This could be one of the night’s closer calls.
Gillian Anderson: Pat
Olivia Colman: Colin
Emma Corrin: Bil, Manuel, Emma, Shane
Gillian Anderson: Manuel, Pat, Shane
Olivia Colman: Bil
Emma Corrin: Emma
Julia Garner: Colin, Daniel
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
The nominees: Dead to Me, The Flight Attendant, The Great, Schitt’s Creek, Ted Lasso
It seems inevitable that the Schitt’s sweep will end with a long-overdue recognition for the cast. But some of our writers really dug The Great, which might have to wait its turn just like the Roses did.
Schitt’s Creek: everyone
The Great: Daniel, Manuel, Shane
Schitt’s Creek: Courtney, Emma, Pat
This for that:
Manuel says: Swap out Dead to Me for Insecure
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
The nominees: Nicholas Hoult, The Great; Dan Levy, Schitt’s Creek; Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek; Jason Sudeikis, Ted Lasso; Ramy Youssef, Ramy
We’re an even split in terms of Dan Levy versus Jason Sudeikis. The latter could prevail here if Levy and Levy split the Schitt’s Creek vote.
Dan Levy: Colin, Courtney, Daniel
Eugene Levy: Manuel
Jason Sudeikis: Emma, Pat, Shane
Nicholas Hoult: Daniel
Dan Levy: Colin, Courtney, Emma, Pat
Ramy Youssef: Manuel, Shane
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
The nominees: Christina Applegate, Dead to Me; Linda Cardellini, Dead to Me; Kaley Cuoco, The Flight Attendant; Annie Murphy, Schitt’s Creek; Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
Saving the best for last, our consensus favours Catherine the Great for her memorable turn as three-time Daytime Emmy Award attendee Moira Rose. It’s hard to imagine a performance this central to making a show a cultural phenomenon going unrecognized by the actors.
Kaley Cuoco: Colin
Catherine O’Hara: Bil, Courtney, Daniel, Emma, Manuel, Pat, Shane
Linda Cardellini: Courtney
Catherine O’Hara: Bil, Daniel, Emma, Manuel, Pat