The Screen Actors Guild Awards have again shifted to a new date for a reimagined one-hour special.

By Joey Nolfi
January 13, 2021 at 12:32 PM EST
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The 2021 Screen Actors Guild Awards have moved once again.

Amid the longest awards season in recent history, the SAG Awards — a strong precursor foretelling Oscars taste — announced a new broadcast date Wednesday, shifting from March 14 to Sunday, April 4, seemingly to avoid a conflict with the upcoming (delayed) Grammy Awards, which are still slated to be handed out on SAG's prior date. The new SAG Awards air date also happens to be Easter Sunday.

In July, the SAG Awards shifted back two months (the ceremony typically happens in January) in the wake of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, following in the footsteps of other awards ceremonies like the Golden Globes (usually held in January, now airing on Feb. 28) and the Oscars (postponed by two months to April 25).

"Throughout these challenging times, our industry and our union members have proven their creativity and resilience in discovering new methods of storytelling while adapting to new safety protocols and procedures," a press release reads. "We embrace that spirit as we re-imagine the SAG Awards with a one-hour special that highlights and expands on our signature I am an Actor opening and honors the outstanding performances of the past year."

Comprised of over 100,000 actor members across the country, the SAG-AFTRA union contributes to one of the most influential voting bodies on the awards circuit, with a large portion of its base crossing over into the Academy's largest branch, meaning the SAG Awards often give a reliable preview of how the Academy will vote. In addition to its annual film awards, the group also recognizes excellence in television acting.

Since the SAG Awards' debut in 1995, 19 lead actresses have won both the SAG Award and the corresponding Oscar; that number jumps to 22 for leading men, including last year's SAG/Oscar winners, Joaquin Phoenix (Joker) and Renée Zellweger (Judy). SAG's ensemble cast honor also crosses into Oscar territory, though not as often as individual acting honors. In 2020, both SAG and Oscar recognized Korean drama Parasite with top honors, while 11 other recipients of SAG's highest competitive honor also took the Academy's top prize in the same year.

Nominations for the 2021 SAG Awards will be announced on Feb. 4, with the eligibility period for releases stretching from Jan. 1, 2020 through Feb. 28, 2021. Watch the SAG Awards on their new air date Sunday, April 4 at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT on TNT and TBS.

Read more from EW's The Awardist, featuring exclusive interviews, analysis, and our podcast diving into all the highlights from the year's best films.

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