The Narcissist's Convention AKA A Night Of Little Surprises: A Report On The 24th Screen Actors Guild (SAG AFTRA) Awards
The yearly SAG AFTRA Awards (Screen Actors Guild - American Federation of Television & Radio Artists) kicked off with the likes of Allison Janey sitting at their table and giving us anecdotes about how they started their acting career, and ending their spiel with their name, and proclaiming, 'I'm an actor'. To put a pinch of humor, when first-time host Kristen Bell went on-screen, she talked about making cassettes singing all these Disney tunes as a child, segueing to, 'and I'm a narcissist... I mean, actor!' And we were off with a great start to the Awards show described as the one 'For actors, by actors'.
In a move decided on last year, but carrying extra poignancy because of the Me Too and Time's Up movements, all the presenters were women. As SAG President Gabrielle Carteris proclaimed, this was about not letting this just be a 'moment in time'. She talked about the shifts that are now being realized, and was applauded for saying, 'Truth is Power, and women are stepping into their Power'.
As the voting is done by one's peers, the SAG Awards are seen as one of the more significant 'weathervanes' of how the Academy Awards nominations & winners will trend - here in Manila, it'll be the morning of January 24th when the Oscar nominations will be announced. And it remains to be seen if the Oscars will pull the rug out from under our feet with their selections - I doubt it though.
As it is, the SAG turned out to be more of a Reconfirmation night as the winners from the past Awards shows trooped up to register their wins and give their acceptance speeches. For the Motion Picture categories, Supporting Actor was Sam Rockwell for Three Billboards, and Supporting Actress was Allison Janey for I, Tonya. Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Lead Role went to Frances McDormand for Three Billboards, and Gary Oldman for Darkest Hour copped the Best Performance by an Actor in a Lead Role. Three Billboards also garnered the Best Performance by a Cast; while Wonder Woman picked up the Best Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture.
For Television work, the winners were:
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series - This Is Us
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble Cast in. Comedy Series - Veep
Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series - Claire Foy, The Crown
Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Drama Series - Stirling Brown, This Is Us
Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Comedy Series - Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Comedy Series - William Macy, Shameless
Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Miniseries - Nicole Kidman, Big Little Lies
Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries - Alexander Skarsgard, Big Little Lies
Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble - Game of Thrones
And Morgan Freeman earned a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Surprisingly, considering this is the one organized by the actors, this was a more sedate, no extra frills, kind of show. Maybe they leave all the 'fireworks' on screen; and prefer to have a more respectable fraternity feel to their own Awards Night.