Good news and bad news for this year's biggest Oscar contenders...
Awards season rolled on Wednesday with the 24th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations. Check out the full list of nods here and read on for analysis of what the latest set of tea leaves might mean for the 90th annual Academy Awards (nominations for which will be announced in January).
Bad news for Oscar faves
As any Oscars stat obsessive will note, no film has won best picture at the Academy Awards without a corresponding nomination in the best ensemble category at the Screen Actors Guild Awards since 1995’s Braveheart. That means expected front-runners in the best picture race Call Me By Your Name, Dunkirk, The Post, and The Shape of Water will have to make history at the Oscars to win (assuming each film scores a nomination in the first place). This year’s SAG nominees: The Big Sick, Get Out, Lady Bird, Mudbound, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
Bad news for Armie Hammer and Michael Stuhlbarg
Many expect Hammer and Stuhlbarg to score twin supporting actor nominations at the Oscars for their empathetic and big-hearted performances in Call Me By Your Name, but neither man made the cut at the Screen Actors Guild Awards. Instead, SAG honored Steve Carell for Battle of the Sexes and Woody Harrelson for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, two solid performances that haven’t been on Oscar prognosticators’ radars in any serious way until now.
Good news for The Big Sick
The Kumail Nanjiani-starring Sundance breakout was ignored by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association on Monday, but the Screen Actors Guild put the film firmly in the race Wednesday with not just a supporting actress nomination for costar Holly Hunter but one for best ensemble as well.
Good news for Daniel Kaluuya, James Franco, and Denzel Washington
The Oscars’ best actor race thus far has focused on the brewing battle between Call Me By Your Name star Timothée Chalamet and Darkest Hour lead Gary Oldman. But it might be time to start penciling in the other nominees as well: fresh off Golden Globe nods, the trio of Kaluuya (Get Out), Franco (The Disaster Artist), and Washington (Roman J. Israel, Esq.) landed SAG nominations on Wednesday, beating out expected contenders Daniel Day-Lewis (Phantom Thread) and Tom Hanks (The Post) in the process. Speaking of which…
Bad news for December releases
As films such as Django Unchained, The Wolf of Wall Street, and Selma learned in the past, it’s sometimes an uphill battle to score nominations from the Screen Actors Guild Awards with year-end releases (screeners are often sent out last-minute, meaning voters are forced to play catch-up). This year, high-profile December releases The Post and Phantom Thread were ignored by the SAG Awards, perhaps dinging the potential candidacies of Day-Lewis, Hanks, and Meryl Streep (who is a favorite to earn her record 21st nomination for The Post).
Great news for Lady Bird and Get Out
The biggest winner on Wednesday? The best picture momentum for Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird and Jordan Peele’s Get Out, each of which nabbed major SAG nominations (best actress, best supporting actress, and best ensemble for Lady Bird; best actor and best ensemble for Get Out). The consensus favorite usually wins best picture at the Oscars, owing to the fact that the Academy Awards uses a preferential ballot system, meaning the most-liked film has a better shot at winning than a movie with equally rabid devotees and detractors (something the polarizing Three Billboards might have to contend with). Both Lady Bird and Get Out have received universal praise all year — it’s difficult to find someone who hasn’t been won over by these movies — and if SAG Awards history is any indication, either could win up winning best picture in March.