Can there possibly be a surprise in store for us at tomorrow night’s Screen Actors Guild awards? Or will the already-established four acting front-runners win again? With Avatar not in the running for the evening’s major prize — Best Ensemble Cast — that’s the one that may end up the most interesting. Here are tomorrow’s nominees, along with my predicted winners. Who do you think will take home the trophies?
Best Supporting Actor
Matt Damon, Invictus
Woody Harrelson, The Messenger
Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones
***Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
I’ve literally lost count of how many awards Waltz has (deservedly) won for his star turn in Inglourious Basterds. How can anyone beat him? Harrelson is the only one with any chance at all. But it’s not going to happen.
Best Supporting Actress
Penélope Cruz, Nine
Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
Diane Kruger, Inglourious Basterds
Another lock. As I’ve said several times this season, Mo’Nique is in a world unto herself with her devastating performance in Precious.
***Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
George Clooney, Up in the Air
Morgan Freeman, Invictus
Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker
Clooney and Firth are worthy opponents, but I still see the beloved Bridges walking away with the win.
Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side
Helen Mirren, The Last Station
Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
***Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia
Bullock has certainly been on a roll lately, with her win at the Globes and the tie with Streep at the Critics Choice Awards. But even she admitted to me after the Globes that Streep deserves to win. And she will, though not by much.
The Hurt Locker
Okay, here we have a prize that’s truly up for grabs. Nine is out, and I don’t think An Education can take it either. Any of the other three could feasibly win. I’m leaning against The Hurt Locker simply because I think many voters will see it more as a feat of directing than acting. Ten of the 20 predictors assembled by Tom O’Neil over at Gold Derby are going with Basterds, which is a great guess. But I’m going against the tide and picking Precious. As we’ve seen from past winners The Full Monty, Sideways, and Slumdog Millionaire, SAG often loves a scrappy, lesser-known cast.
Who do you all think will win tomorrow? I’ll have all the winners here at OscarWatch as well as on Twitter (@davekarger).