SAG Awards: Diane Kruger one of couple of surprises + Best Cast vs. individual actors' nominations mismatch
The nominees for the 2010 Screen Actors Guild Awards – SAG Awards, for short – were announced earlier today, Dec. 17. The only two real surprises among the feature film nominees (see full list further below) are:
- Diane Kruger shortlisted as Best Supporting Actress for Quentin Tarantino's World War II revenge fantasy Inglourious Basterds.
- Lone Scherfig's British drama An Education in the running for Best Cast.
As far as we can tell, this marks Diane Kruger's first (not totally obscure) mention this awards season, as Christoph Waltz is the one Inglourious Basterds performer to have been singled out time and again, while fellow player Mélanie Laurent received nominations from the Detroit, St. Louis, and Online film critics.
An Education, on the other hand, wasn't exactly unexpected. The surprise about its Best Cast nomination is that only one of its performers received an individual nod: Carey Mulligan, in contention for Best Actress.
How earthbound is the 'Up in the Air' supporting cast?
Making just about as much sense, Jason Reitman's Up in the Air – which was not shortlisted for Best Cast – collected no less than three individual nods: Best Actor for George Clooney, and Best Supporting Actress for Vera Farmiga and Anna Kendrick.
And that surely means the film's supporting players – Melanie Lynskey, Jason Bateman, Amy Morton, J.K. Simmons, Sam Elliott, Chris Lowell, et al. – must have been so horrible, but so horrible that they sucked out all the goodwill bestowed on the three Up in the Air principals.
In fact, Up in the Air received more individual nominations than any of the Best Cast (or “Performance by a Cast”) nominees. Inglourious Basterds and Lee Daniels' family drama Precious managed two, while Kathryn Bigelow's Iraq War thriller The Hurt Locker and Rob Marshall's musical Nine received one each.
Marion Cotillard: Lead vs. supporting
For the last film, Marion Cotillard has been pushed as Best Actress. A miscalculation, as in that ensemble piece focused on Daniel Day-Lewis' character (Marcello Mastroianni's old 8½ role), Cotillard would have had a much better chance in the supporting actress category.
At the Oscars, Academy members may place their nominees in the category they find most appropriate; at the SAG Awards, the placement is done according to how the performers are categorized in the official submissions.
SAG Awards: Feature Film nominations
- Jeff Bridges for his aging country singer in Crazy Heart.
- George Clooney for his corporate-downsizing expert in Up in the Air.
- Colin Firth for his bereaved gay college professor in A Single Man.
- Morgan Freeman for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela in Invictus.
- Jeremy Renner for his Iraq War sergeant in The Hurt Locker.
- Sandra Bullock for her compassionate “conservative” mom in The Blind Side.
- Helen Mirren for her Sofya Tolstoy, wife of Leo, in The Last Station.
- Carey Mulligan for her 1960s London schoolgirl involved with an older man in An Education.
- Gabourey Sidibe for her illiterate, abused, pregnant teen in Precious.
- Meryl Streep for her portrayal of chef Julia Child in Nora Ephron's Julie & Julia.
Best Supporting Actor
- Matt Damon for his South African rugby player in Invictus.
- Woody Harrelson for his U.S. Army captain in The Messenger.
- Christopher Plummer for his portrayal of Leo Tolstoy in The Last Station.
- Stanley Tucci for his psycho murderer in The Lovely Bones.
- Christoph Waltz for his multilingual Nazi in Inglourious Basterds.
Best Supporting Actress
- Penélope Cruz for her sexy mistress in Nine.
- Vera Farmiga for her frequent flyer in Up in the Air.
- Anna Kendrick for her ambitious corporate worker in Up in the Air.
- Diane Kruger for her German film star/spy in Inglourious Basterds.
- Mo'Nique for her abusive Harlem mom in Precious.
- An Education.
- The Hurt Locker.
- Inglourious Basterds.
SAG Awards vs. Academy Awards
Expect the Oscars to look pretty much like the SAG Award nominations, except for:
- Diane Kruger – her spot will likely go to Julianne Moore for A Single Man, or Emma Thompson for An Education, or Samantha Morton for The Messenger, or even Marion Cotillard for Nine.
- The Best Picture category. Remember, the Oscars now have 10 slots. Up in the Air will surely land one of them.
In fact, 2010 may turn out to be the second year when the Best Picture Academy Award winner – i.e., Up in the Air, or even something like James Cameron's SAG Awards orphan Avatar – ends up taking home an Oscar statuette despite the absence of a Best Cast SAG Award nod.
The first and only time to date that happened? Back in 1995, the first year of the SAG Awards, when Mel Gibson's war epic Braveheart became the Academy's Best Picture after its ensemble cast was left out of the SAG nominations.
See below our extensive – and, shockingly, for the most part correct – SAG Awards predictions, which were posted yesterday.
Update: Full list of the 2010 SAG Awards' winners & nominations.
SAG Awards: Predictions
Dec. 16: The nominations for the 2010 Screen Actors Guild Awards will be announced tomorrow morning by Michelle Monaghan and Chris O'Donnell. As usual, expect some surprises.
In the past, SAG voters – only a relatively small group of SAG members vote on the nominations – have made unexpected choices such as Dev Patel for Best Supporting Actor in Slumdog Millionaire, Best Actress nods for Ziyi Zhang in Memoirs of a Geisha and for Patricia Clarkson in The Station Agent, and Best Cast nods for 3:10 to Yuma, Hairspray, and Hustle & Flow.
But no matter what, don't expect a Best Cast mention for James Cameron's Avatar.
SAG Awards Predictions: Best Cast
- The Hurt Locker - Jeremy Renner. Brian Geraghty. Ralph Fiennes. Anthony Mackie. Guy Pearce. Evangeline Lilly. Dir.: Kathryn Bigelow.
- Inglourious Basterds - Brad Pitt. Mélanie Laurent. Christoph Waltz. Diane Kruger. Michael Fassbender. Eli Roth. Daniel Brühl. Til Schweiger. August Diehl. Rod Taylor. Dir.: Quentin Tarantino.
- Nine - Daniel Day-Lewis. Penélope Cruz. Marion Cotillard. Nicole Kidman. Judi Dench. Fergie. Sophia Loren. Kate Hudson. Dir.: Rob Marshall.
- Precious - Gabourey Sidibe. Mo'Nique. Paula Patton. Lenny Kravitz. Mariah Carey. Dir.: Lee Daniels.
- Up in the Air - George Clooney. Anna Kendrick. Vera Farmiga. Melanie Lynskey. Jason Bateman. Amy Morton. J.K. Simmons. Sam Elliott. Chris Lowell. Dir.: Jason Reitman.
- It's Complicated - Meryl Streep. Alec Baldwin. Steve Martin. John Krasinski. Lake Bell. Mary Kay Place. Rita Wilson. Hunter Parrish. Alexandra Wentworth. Caitlin Fitzgerald. Zoe Kazan. Dir.: Nancy Meyers.
- An Education - Carey Mulligan. Emma Thompson. Peter Sarsgaard. Alfred Molina. Dominic Cooper. Cara Seymour. Dir.: Lone Scherfig.
- The Last Station - James McAvoy. Helen Mirren. Christopher Plummer. Paul Giamatti. Dir.: Michael Hoffman.
- Moon - Sam Rockwell in what amounts to an ensemble of one. Dir.: Duncan Jones.
SAG Awards Predictions: Best Actress
Critics' faves Meryl Streep and Carey Mulligan will definitely be shortlisted for the Best Actress SAG Award. The other three slots are a little iffier.
Sandra Bullock will likely get her first Best Actress SAG Award nod for playing a “conservative” matriarch who adopts an inner-city teen (Quinton Aaron) in John Lee Hancock's sleeper hit The Blind Side.
After all, Bullock has been around for more than two decades, and Hancock's crowd-pleasing drama was her second major hit of 2009 (following Anne Fletcher's The Proposal). All About Steve notwithstanding, this has been the year when Bullock proved she can do comedy and drama and earn millions in both genres – and that's no small feat.
Helen Mirren did get nominations for both the Golden Globes and the Spirit Awards, while Gabourey Sidibe is, along with Carey Mulligan, the (English-speaking) female newcomer of the year. As Precious is bound to get a Best Cast SAG Award nod, it's fair to say that Sidibe will get her own personal nomination since she's at the core of Lee Daniels' film.
- Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side.
- Helen Mirren, The Last Station.
- Carey Mulligan, An Education.
- Gabourey Sidibe, Precious.
- Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia.
- Saoirse Ronan, The Lovely Bones.
- Marion Cotillard, Nine.
- Emily Blunt, The Young Victoria.
SAG Awards Predictions: Best Actor
The 2010 SAG Awards' Best Actor field is a little crowded. Even so, four actors have a lock on a nomination: George Clooney for Up in the Air, Jeff Bridges for Crazy Heart, Morgan Freeman for Invictus, and Colin Firth for A Single Man.
The fifth slot, however, is up for grabs. Jeremy Renner is a strong possibility, especially considering that The Hurt Locker is sure to get a Best Cast nod.
Nominations for actors with hyphenated names?
That said, it's just as possible that Daniel Day-Lewis will get shortlisted for Nine, even though neither the film nor his performance has created many waves among U.S. critics. Well, except for the Broadcast Film Critics Association.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt got a surprising Golden Globe nod and has a pretty good chance of getting some SAG Award recognition as well for Marc Webb's sleeper hit (500) Days of Summer, while it's possible that Viggo Mortensen's fellow actors will want to honor him for his tackling a difficult role in John Hillcoat's dystopian drama The Road.
- Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart.
- George Clooney, Up in the Air.
- Colin Firth, A Single Man.
- Morgan Freeman, Invictus.
- Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker.
- Daniel Day-Lewis, Nine.
- Viggo Mortensen, The Road.
- Joseph Gordon-Levitt, (500) Days of Summer.
Jeff Bridges Oscar & SAG Award nominations
 Jeff Bridges' four Oscar nods were for the following: as Best Supporting Actor for The Last Picture Show (1971), Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974), and The Contender (2000); as Best Actor for Starman (1984).
Jeff Bridges' SAG Award nominations were as Best Supporting Actor for The Contender and as a member of the Seabiscuit (2003) cast.
SAG Awards Predictions: Best Supporting Actress
The actresses listed below are the same ones who received Golden Globe nominations. Two of them are shoo-ins: Mo'Nique for Precious and Anna Kendrick for Up in the Air. The other three are “very strong possibilities.”
Marion Cotillard is the one getting most of the good notices for Nine, but Penélope Cruz has her name, her likability quotient, and her other 2009 performance – in Pedro Almodóvar's Broken Embraces – to help her get a nod from her fellow actors for playing Daniel Day-Lewis' showy mistress (Sandra Milo in 8½).
Vera Farmiga has the less showy role in Up in the Air, but she's a well-regarded actress whose time may have finally come. As a plus, Up in the Air will likely land a Best Cast nomination.
Julianne Moore is another well-respected performer – four Oscar nominations to date – in a well-respected film, Tom Ford's A Single Man.
- Penélope Cruz, Nine.
- Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air.
- Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air.
- Mo'Nique, Precious.
- Julianne Moore, A Single Man.
- Samantha Morton, The Messenger.
- Emma Thompson, An Education.
SAG Awards Predictions: Best Supporting Actor
The SAG Award nominations in the Best Supporting Actor category will most likely match those of the Golden Globes, as, for whatever reason, this is the least competitive race in the acting categories.
Update: Me and Orson Welles' Christian McKay may turn out to be an “upset” nominee, as his portrayal of the Citizen Kane and The Lady from Shanghai filmmaker has been widely praised. But how many SAG Award members have had the chance to take a look at Richard Linklater's little-seen film starring Zac Efron and Claire Danes?
- Matt Damon, Invictus.
- Christopher Plummer, The Last Station.
- Woody Harrelson, The Messenger.
- Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones.
- Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds.
- Alfred Molina, An Education.
- Christian McKay, Me and Orson Welles.
SAG Awards website.
Image of SAG Awards surprise nominee Diane Kruger in Inglourious Basterds: The Weinstein Company.
Sandra Bullock The Blind Side image: Warner Bros.
Jeff Bridges Crazy Heart image: Fox Searchlight Pictures.
Penélope Cruz Nine image: The Weinstein Company.
Image of SAG Awards potential upset nominee Christian McKay in Me and Orson Welles: Freestyle Releasing.
“SAG Awards: Diane Kruger Surprise + Bizarre Best Cast vs. Individual Nominations Mismatch” last updated in August 2018.