First-ever SAG Awards host Kristen Bell opened the show with a brief monologue: a couple jokes, a few important statements and a not-too-early “Frozen 2” plug. She and Maya Rudolph then presented the first award of the night. Bell appeared a few more times during the night, including with a well-written bit midway through featuring Steve Carell and Cheryl Hines.
All 13 awards handed-out during the telecast were presented by women. The only men who appeared on stage were either winners (in TV & Film), male cast members of Best Movie Ensemble nominees and Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Morgan Freeman. Freeman’s tribute was well-done, and his speech was surprisingly short but fine.
The Stunt Ensemble Awards presented prior to the telecast were awarded to “Wonder Woman” (for film) and “Game of Thrones” (for the 7th year in a row – for television).
Julia Louis-Dreyfus has made SAG Awards history, becoming the first television actress with five individual wins. Louis-Dreyfus was not in attendance. Presenters Connie Britton and Mandy Moore accepted on her behalf, with Britton saying, “We are thinking of you. And we love you.” Earlier in the day, HBO announced they will be delaying the airing of the next (and final) season of “Veep” until 2019. They will begin filming in August, once Louis-Dreyfus is strong enough following her cancer treatments.
Allison Janney (“I, Tonya”) and Sam Rockwell (“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”) have solidified themselves as Oscar frontrunners, going 3 for 3 this Awards Season in the Supporting Actress and Supporting Actor categories, respectively.
Nicole Kidman’s Best Actress in a TV Movie or Limited Series win for “Big Little Lies” certainly wasn’t a surprise. What is surprising is that this is her first career SAG Awards win – after 10 nominations. Kidman won an Oscar for 2002’s “The Hours” and was a SAG Best Actress nominee for that film, but she lost to Renee Zellweger for “Chicago”.
Broadcast TV won big with NBC’s “This is Us” earning two honors – Sterling K. Brown for Lead Actor in a Drama Series and Drama Series Ensemble.
Gary Oldman was very emotional during his Best Actor acceptance speech for “Darkest Hour”. He’s almost a lock to win the BAFTA, so the Oscar is well within his reach. Best Actor nominee James Franco was in attendance. Frances McDormand (“Three Billboards”) is the Best Actress frontrunner too following her SAG win.
And as for Best Ensemble… the expected choice won: “Three Billboards”. I took a risk by predicting “Get Out”, so I went 5 for 6 for the night.