- South Korean dark comedy Parasite is quickly accruing Oscars hype, winning the SAG Awards’ top honour
- Brad Pitt watched Jennifer Aniston’s acceptance speech backstage before they warmly congratulated each other
- Fleabag, the Marvelous Mrs Maisel, Joaquin Phoenix and Laura Dern also picked up awards
With their proximity to the Oscars – only three weeks away – the Screen Actor’s Guild awards are closely watched as an Academy Awards harbinger.
Held on Monday morning (Australian time) at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, the awards honour both film and TV and are voted on by members of the main actor’s union.
The ceremony made history, with South Korean film Parasite becoming the first foreign language film to win the SAG Awards’ top honour — only adding to growing Oscar buzz for the dark comedy.
But — for better or worse — the moment everyone will be talking about tomorrow was the reunion of former husband and wife Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston backstage.
If you can get over that, here’s a roundup of our top five takeaways from the evening.
The Parasite cast received a two-minute standing ovation
Parasite has officially infected this year’s award season.
Director Bong Joon Ho’s film won the Outstanding Performance by a Cast gong over starrier productions like Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood and The Irishman.
The audience greeted the victory for Parasite with a standing ovation.
The win sets the dark comedy up as a legitimate best-picture contender to the frontrunner 1917 at next month’s Academy Awards.
But it’s not a given: for the last two years, the SAG ensemble winners — Black Panther in 2019 and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri in 2018 — has not gone on to win best picture at the Oscars.
This year’s Oscars front-runner, 1917, more acclaimed for its technical acumen, wasn’t nominated for the SAG ensemble award.
In fact, the Producers Guild Awards (PGAs) is generally more predictive than the SAG awards.
In 21 of the last 30 years, the PGA winner has lined up with the eventual best picture winner.
The PGAs, which were held on Sunday Australian time, chose 1917 as its top film.
Brad and Jen reunited backstage, breaking the internet
One reunion trumped all others at the SAG Awards, where both Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston took home awards and celebrated each other’s wins.
Pitt is headed toward his first acting Academy Award for his supporting performance in Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood, and he added to his front-runner status with a win from the actors’ guild.
Along the way, his speeches have been full of one-liners and he didn’t disappoint on Sunday night.
Pitt, who said he was nursing a flu, looked down at his award and said, “I’ve got to add this to my Tinder profile.”
“Let’s be honest, it was a difficult part,” he said.
“A guy who gets high, takes his shirt off and doesn’t get on with his wife.
“It was a big stretch.”
The audience laughed and clapped, including — as the cameras captured — Aniston, his ex-wife.
Aniston later won an award of her own for best female actor in a drama series for the Apple TV Plus show The Morning Show.
Backstage, Pitt watched Aniston’s acceptance speech.
After she got off stage, they warmly congratulated each other on their first individual SAG Awards — promptly breaking the internet.
Joaquin Phoenix praised his Joker predecessor, Heath Ledger
Along with Pitt, all the Oscar favourites kept their momentum, including wins for Renee Zellweger (Judy), Joaquin Phoenix (Joker) and Laura Dern (Marriage Story).
As expected, Phoenix took best performance by a male actor.
After individually praising each fellow nominee, Phoenix concluded with a nod to his Joker predecessor.
“I’m standing here on the shoulders of my favourite actor, Heath Ledger,” said Phoenix.
Dern also further established herself as the best supporting actress favourite with a win from the actors’ guild.
On her way to the stage, she hugged her father, Bruce Dern (part of the Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood ensemble).
Awkward! A Marvelous Mrs Maisel cast member admitted she voted for competitor Fleabag
Phoebe Waller-Bridge continued her awards sweep for Fleabag, a winner at the Emmys and the Golden Globes.
Waller-Bridge added a SAG win for best female actor in a comedy series and took a moment to reflect on the show’s parade of accolades.
“This whole thing really has been a dream, and if I wake up tomorrow and discover it was just that, then thank you,” said Waller-Bridge.
“It’s been the most beautiful dream.”
The Marvelous Mrs Maisel also continued its streak, winning best comedy series ensemble for the second straight year, along with Tony Shalhoub taking home the statue for best male actor in a comedy series.
But while accepting the award for outstanding performance by an ensemble, the show’s shocked Alex Borstein said she had voted for Fleabag.
“I voted for Fleabag! This is really weird,” she said.
“This makes no sense, Fleabag is brilliant.”
And of course, an awards show couldn’t go by without a reference to Trump
Robert De Niro was given the guild’s lifetime achievement award, an honour presented by Leonardo DiCaprio who, like De Niro, is a frequent leading man for Martin Scorsese.
The two co-star in Scorsese’s upcoming Killers of the Flower Moon.
A raucous standing ovation greeted the 76-year-old actor.
De Niro, a fiery critic of Donald Trump, referenced the President in his remarks.
“There’s right and there’s wrong,” he said.
“And there’s common sense and there’s abuse of power.
“As a citizen, I have as much right as anybody — an actor, an athlete, anybody else — to voice my opinion.
“And if I have a bigger voice because of my situation, I’m going to use it whenever I see a blatant abuse of power.”
Story Credit: abc.net.au