Well, here we are at Zero Hour. The Screen Actors Guild Awards known as SAG are about to begin, and I’m here doing this live-blogging once again for all of you dear readers, dear cineastes and I guess the big question is which film is going to win the Best Ensemble Award. Which is SAG equivalent to Best Picture. You see “La La Land” the juggernaut to end all awards juggernauts is not singing and dancing it’s way to the podium tonight, because it is not even nominated in that category. Sasha Stone at Awardsdaily.com is saying this is significant because it shows there is a flaw in the so far flawless march to the podium that “La La Land” has initiated this awards season.
“La La Land” won a historic Seven Golden Globe Awards and garnered also an equally historic 14 Oscar nominations, putting in it a class with such classics as”All About Eve” and “Titantic.” And now comes SAG and the Screen Actors shut it out completely of their Best Ensemble category. However there are only really two actors in “La La Land” which technically does not make it an ensemble. It’s a glorious two-hander and both hands DID get nominated. Emma Stone as Best Actress and Ryan Gosling as Best Actor. They could both win tonight. Or not.
The first category will be one of the Supporting Actors right off the bat. Viola Davis is such a lock for the win in that category for “Fences”, they will probably give out that accolade first. There is some suspense, but not much, because front-runner Mahershala Ali of “Moonlight” did not win at the Globes in the Supporting Actor category.
It’s a role that only occurs in the first third of this movie, that is also nominated for Best Ensemble. So that will be the first surprise of the night…Or not…If not Ali, then I think it might go to Dev Patel of “Lion” as the only other actor of color in that category. I think that #Oscarssowhite controversy is still on every one’s mind. Every SAG voter that is. So we shall soon see.
Did I say there a lot of TV shows honored? That’s the bulk of the show. There are only five awards for film, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Actress. And as I said, Best Ensemble.
Best Supporting Actor as I said is announced first. And it’s Viola Davis. Big surprise. In a beautiful, white silk, floor-length gown. Viola thanks the late August Wilson over and over again. Very emotional. Beautiful. Moving. “Putting the ordinary man of color’s story in the center of the narrative.”
Mahershala Ali blows the roof off the place when he wins Best Supporting Actor for his compassionate drug dealer, who he describes as “a gentleman who sees a young man folding into himself.” And seals his Oscar for sure proclaiming himself a Muslim. You could hear a pin drop. He was in a white tuxedo. And that was a magnificent speech.