Friday, January 23, 2009

My SAG ballot and predictions

The SAGS are this Sunday, and are always one of the most exciting and shocking film awards of the year. This said - they hardly ever match up with Oscar, bot no matter. They are to be respected because they are chosen by the actors. Anyhow, here are the awards, my ballot choices, and who I predict will take home the trophy.

Nominees: Jenkins, Langella, Penn, Pitt, Rourke

Obviously my ballot would check off Mickey Rourke as the winner for his spellbinding work in The Wrestler, hands down. Even though I LOVED Penn, I really enjoyed Pitt, and Jenkins broke my heart. (I've yet to see Langella). However, SAG most likely will not go to Rourke, sadly. I expect its a 4 person race actually, between Penn, Rourke, Langella, and Pitt. Here's why: Sean Penn is probably the most popular choice here - and he has NEVER won a SAG. So surely they are going to want to reward him finally. Rourke is the comeback kid, hot off a winning streak in a fantastic film, but he has worked with the least amount of the voting actors here - and is struggling to come back from a bad boy attitude - he may lose votes. Langella is the respected elder here, and that may push him to a win. If he is going to have a big win this season - it is here. And finally there's Pitt. He has the friends on his side - as he is the center of many of Hollywood social centers. His best friend afterall is George Cloony. Plus he is seen as a good, caring, charitable guy which could help him earn points here. If he wins the SAG he could be back in the Oscar race. However, all that aside, I do think it all comes down to Penn VS. Rourke again. And this time I think Penn will get the accolade, which makes the Oscar race that much more interesting.

My Ballot Pick: Mickey Rourke in "The Wrestler"
My Predicted Winner: Sean Penn in "Milk"

Nominees: Hathaway, Jolie, Leo, Streep, Winslet

This is honestly anyone's award as well, except one (Anne Hathaway). Each of the 5 ladies have their plusses, AND minuses. I do think the Winslet machine may take a big hit on SAG night, and I guarantee she will not win both awards. However will she win one at all? I am betting on yes, but probably not here. I think her stronger chance is in supporting, but she has had a great year. Streep is in a good position to take the award for 2 reasons: She is the most respected actor nominated the whole evening. Everyone loves Meryl. That added onto Doubt receiving the most nominations, and every actor in the film is nominated - makes it look like there's a lot of love for the film. Anne Hathaway has come on strong early on, but I just dont think she has the respect of the crowd just yet, not when compared to these ladies. I may be wrong, but I don't think she has a shot. Angelina Jolie only has 1 win so far this year, and I wouldn't count her out 100% for a win here - although it is a long shot. She has won 3, yes 3, SAGS in the past (Girl Interrupted, Gia, and George Wallace) (and a nomination last year for Mighty Heart). She has a good track record, and Changeling is her best work yet. She is popular with the crowd, and the fact her hubby is nominated doesn't hurt either. Finally there's Melissa Leo - and if you count her out - you are doomed to be upset. She snagged the SAG nomination and weeks later an Oscar nod, knocking out front runner Sally Hawkins, as well as Winslet (for Rev. Road), and Kristin Scott Thomas. People RAVE about her performance. She could also have a BIG win here - which would push her to the top 2 in my book for Oscar contenders. However, with all the talk aside - I think the obvious choice will be made.

My Ballot Pick: Angelina Jolie in "Changeling"
My Predicted Winner: Meryl Streep in "Doubt"

nominees: Brolin, Downey Jr, Hoffman, Ledger, Patel

Why even go through all the talk? This ones obvious.

My Ballot Pick: Phillip Seymore Hoffman in "Doubt"
My Predicted Winner: Heath Ledger in "The Dark Knight" ... duh

nominees: Adams, Cruz, Davis, Henson, Winslet

This, as I think it will be all season, is the race to watch. It is a 3 person race, I assume. (However I am so pissed Marisa Tomei was snubbed here for "The Wrestler"). Put simply, Taraji P. Henson for Benjamin Button, has no shot at the win (and shouldn't be nominated in my book). Amy Adams, who I think *may* even give the best performance in Doubt, also just doesn't have the buzz. Its down between Winslet VS. Cruz VS. Davis. I keep Davis in because of the love for Doubt, and she is also a respected theatre actress, which the SAGS love. However it won't be surprising if again its between Kate and Penelope. I predict Kate loses best actress, but will she lose here? I think it *may* happen. She may split the votes from herself, which is always a dangerous thing when you're multiply awesome in one year. But for the sake of argument, I will say Winslet comes out ahead here - by a squeaker.

My Ballot Pick: Amy Adams in "Doubt"
My Predicted Winner: Kate Winslet in "The Reader"


to predict the winners - we have to notice who all from the cast was listed as nominees, who would take home a trophy should their film win. Here are the lists of actors singled out in each film nominated:

Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, Phillip Seymore Hoffman, Viola Davis, Alice Drummond, and Joseph Foster

Frank Langella, Michael Sheen, Sam Rockwell, Kevin Bacon, Oliver Platt, Rebecca Hall, Toby Jones, Patty McCormack, Clint Howard, Kate Jennings Grant, and Andy Milder

Sean Penn, Emile Hirsch, Josh Brolin, James Franco, Diego Luna, Allison Pill, Victor Garber, Dennis O'Hare, Joseph Cross, Brandon Boyce, Stephen Spinnella, Jeff Koons, and Howard Rosenman

Dev Patel, Anil Kapur, Frida Pinto, Rajendranath Zutshi, Saurabh Shukla, Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail, Ayush Mahesh Khedekar, Mahesh Manjrekar, Sanchita Choudhary, and Himanshu Tyagi

Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Taraji P. Henson, Tilda Swinton, Julia Ormond, Elias Koteas, Jason Flymeng, Mahershalalhashbaz Ali, Elle Fanning, Jared Harris, Edith Ivey, Madisen Beaty, and David Ross Paterson

As you can see there are a lot of well known names, and newcomers. I think this is totally a 5 way race. I could hypothetically see any of them winning. However if I had to choose the top 3 that have a surefire chance to win it would be Doubt, Milk, and Slumdog Millionaire -- although Frost/Nixon and Button could easily win. I think the love shown to Doubt in the nominations is a HUGE example or why it would win. Milk also has some acting nods too - and it truly is an ensemble piece. Slumdog makes it in here because there were no acting nods (aside from Dev Patel) and maybe they will want to make up for it here (and ride the Slumdog hype all the way to the Oscars). But I am going with the surefire bet - and with who should win dammit.

My Ballot Pick: Doubt
My Predicted Winner: Doubt

we will see what happens on Sunday!

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