The heat of Oscar season will come to an abrupt close on Saturday. Whether they had time, or their kids had time, or their nannies had time, or their mistresses had time to fill them out, those suckers are due. If they aren’t filled out and turned in by Saturday, those votes won’t count.
Either which way, Oscar ballots will have been turned in by the time the SAG awards and the PGA awards hold their ceremonies this weekend.
The SAG Awards will be held on Saturday night. The Avatars Producers Guild will be held the next day. The PGA Awards won’t be televised. We’ll have our usual late night wait to hear the news.
The SAGs seem almost sewn up except for Actor and Actress. The Producers Guild seems pretty well sewn up as well. Even though they have been known to go smaller and choose films that weren’t necessarily the biggest money makers, everyone knows that the PGA will go for Avatar. It is written.
Over at Gold Derby, Tom O’Neil has compiled a nice list of predictions. Actress is split mostly in Streep’s favor, though a few are predicting Bullock. Actor has almost everyone going for Jeff Bridges, except two who are going for Clooney. Ensemble has most predicting Inglourious Basterds but some on Precious. And even a few, like Michael Musto (who seems to be pretty good at this) predicting The Hurt Locker. If The Hurt Locker wins the SAG it improves its chances greatly to win Best Pic.
The Screen Actors Guild did not see fit to award Avatar an ensemble nomination, nor any nominations at all. It is extremely rare for a film to win Best Pic without this crucial support from the actor’s branch. But it happens, particularly if that kind of money is involved. Avatar will topple Titanic’s take. It isn’t a matter of if but a matter of this weekend or next. Either way, it will happen exactly at the right time. And essentially blow out the competition in the process.
Each one of the ensemble picks has a chance at winning. Usually, Oscar nominations have been announced by the time the SAG awards are held. You look for the best picture crossover. But with no nominations, we can only speculate.
So let’s speculate, shall we?
The SAG Awards Predictions
Ryan Adams, Awards Daily
Damien Bona, Inside Oscar
Erik Childress, Cinematical, eFilmCritic
Scott Feinberg, And the Winner Is
Dave Karger, EW
Craig Kennedy, Living in Cinema
Tom O’Neil, Gold Derby
Steve Pond, The Wrap
Kris Tapley, In Contention
BEST FILM ACTOR
Jeff Bridges, “Crazy Heart” ‚Äî Feinberg, Karger, Kennedy, O’Neil, Pond
George Clooney, “Up in the Air” – Tapley, Stone
Colin Firth, “A Single Man” — Adams
Morgan Freeman, “Invictus”
Jeremy Renner, “The Hurt Locker”
BEST FILM ACTRESS
Sandra Bullock, “The Blind Side” ‚Äî Stone, Kennedy
Helen Mirren, “The Last Station”
Carey Mulligan, “An Education” — Adams
Gabourey Sidibe, “Precious”
Meryl Streep, “Julie & Julia” ‚Äî Bona, Childress, Feinberg, Karger, O’Neil, Pond, Tapley
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Matt Damon, “Invictus”
Woody Harrelson, “The Messenger”
Christopher Plummer, “The Last Station” — Bona
Stanley Tucci, “The Lovely Bones”
Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds” ‚Äî Childress, Feinberg, Karger, Kennedy, O’Neil, Pond, Stone, Adams , Tapley
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Penelope Cruz, “Nine”
Vera Farmiga, “Up in the Air”
Anna Kendrick, “Up in the Air” — Adams
Diane Kruger, “Inglourious Basterds”
Mo’Nique, “Precious” ‚Äî Bona, Childress, Feinberg, Karger, Kennedy, O’Neil, Pond, Stone, Tapley
BEST FILM ENSEMBLE
“An Education” – Adams
“The Hurt Locker”
“Inglourious Basterds” ‚Äî Childress, Feinberg, Kennedy, Pond, Stone, Tapley
“Precious”¬† Bona, Karger, O’Neil
The one thing that concerns/interests me in this is the ideas of how many people got screeners. Tapley told me this, and I found a Pete Hammond quote on Gold Derby:
‚Ä¢ Pete Hammond reports, “Five distributors have decided to pop for about $200,000 each to send their screeners to the entire approximately 94,000-person membership of SAG in order to try to give their nominees a leg up. This is a pricey proposition, but¬†SAG members should be aware before voting that they are about to receive specially pressed copies of ‘Up In The Air,’ ‘Julie And Julia,’ which landed Meryl Streep a best actress nod, along with ensemble cast nominees ‘Inglorious Basterds,’ ‘An Education’ and ‘Precious.'”
The nominating committee for the SAG is much smaller, obviously, than the 94,000 body. So you have to figure, the winning ensemble is going be either Basterds, An Education, or Precious. How many of them will even have seen The Hurt Locker? Not many probably. Precious is the hardest hitting, with three “non-actors” in the leading roles. Gabby Sidibe, off the streets. Mo’Nique and Mariah Carey. It’s possible, but kind of seems like a tough sell to me. Then again, Slumdog won last year so anything’s possible. An Education, by contrast, has “real actors,” like Peter Sarsgaard, Alfred Molina, Emma Thompson for godssake. Still, one can’t help but shake the feeling that the Basterds, with that sprawling cast, has to take the prize. I would say it’s down to those two movies. And it’s a tough call between them.
We’ll do Producers Guild tomorrow.