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‘Ma Rainey,’ ‘Minari’ and Boseman lead Screen Actors Guild nominations
NEW YORK — Chadwick Boseman received two posthumous nominations from the 27th Screen Actors Guild Awards on Thursday, while the Korean American family drama “Minari” and Spike Lee’s Vietnam veteran drama “Da 5 Bloods” were among the nominees for best ensemble.
The nominees, announced on Instagram Live, differed notably from the Golden Globe nominations announced the day before. While the Hollywood Foreign Press Association spurned films with largely non-white casts in its tops awards, the actors guild nominated a strikingly more diverse slate of nominees for its top award, best ensemble.
Up for best ensemble are Regina King’s “One Night in Miami,” about a 1964 meeting of four Black icons; the August Wilson adaptation “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”; Lee Isaac Chung’s “Minari”; Lee’s “Da 5 Bloods” and Aaron Sorkin’s 1960s courtroom drama “The Trial of the Chicago 7.”
All of those films, except Sorkin’s, were overlooked Wednesday by the Globes in its top award, best dramatic film. “Minari,” set in Arkansas but with largely Korean dialogue, was even ruled ineligible for the category by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.
But the SAG Awards are considered a far better barometer for the Academy Awards. Actors account for the largest percentage of the film academy. Usually, the eventual Oscar best picture winner is first nominated for best ensemble by the SAG Awards, though “Green Book” and “The Shape of Water” were two recent exceptions. Last year, Bong Joon Ho’s “Parasite” won the SAG’s top honor (and became the first non-English film to do so) before triumphing at the Oscars.
That field of ensemble nominees left out a pair of frontrunners in David Fincher’s golden-age Hollywood drama “Mank” (which led the Globes with six nominations) and Chloe Zhao’s Western road movie “Nomadland.” The stars of each — Gary Oldman in “Mank,” Frances McDormand in “Nomadland” — were both nominated by the actors guild.
Boseman, who died last August at age 43, was nominated not just for his lead performance in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” but also his supporting role in “Da 5 Bloods.” In 2019, he memorably accepted the SAG ensemble award for “Black Panther.”
“We all know what it’s like to be told that there is not a place for you to be featured — yet you are young, gifted and Black,” Boseman said then. “We know what it’s like to be told there’s not a screen for you to be featured on, a stage for you to be featured on.”
Aside from Boseman and Oldman, the nominees for best male actor in a lead role were Riz Ahmed (“Sound of Metal”), Anthony Hopkins (“The Father”) and Steven Yeun (“Minari”).
Viola Davis, Boseman’s “Ma Rainey” co-star, was nominated for best female actor in a leading role alongside McDormand, Carey Mulligan (“Promising Young Woman”), Amy Adams (“Hillbilly Elegy”) and Vanessa Kirby (“Pieces of a Woman”).
Nominated for best female actor in a supporting role are Maria Bakalova (“Borat Subsequent Moviefilm”), Glenn Close (“Hillbilly Elegy”), Olivia Colman (“The Father”), Yuh-Jung Young (“Minari”) and Helena Zengel (“News of the World”).
The other supporting nominees for male actors are Daniel Kaluuya (“Judas and the Black Messiah”), Sacha Baron Cohen (“The Trial of the Chicago 7”), Jared Leto (“The Little Things”) and Leslie Odom Jr. (“One Night in Miami”).
In an already recurring theme for a movie year in which many theaters were often closed, Netflix led all studios. It accounted for 30 nominees in all, about triple the closest competitor.
In a first, the nominations were streamed on Instagram, with Daveed Diggs and Lily Collins serving as hosts. At first, Diggs had trouble allowing Collins to join him.
“There are so many more comments than I thought there would be,” he said.
It also meant Diggs was live when Collins announced his nomination for best male actor in a television movie or limited series, for the film version of “Hamilton.” He responded that the awards were “clearly rigged.”
“This ‘Hamilton’ gift, it keeps giving,” said Diggs.
The SAG Awards will be held almost three months later this year, on April 4. After postponing due to the pandemic to March 14, the SAGs again moved when the Grammy Awards also took that date. The Oscars won’t be held until April 28. Nominees, to be announced March 15, are still more than five weeks away.