Ah, the Guilds! The time of year when precursor award shows continue to close ranks around the season’s frontrunners and people who get the statues debate whether to use their Good Speech or potentially hold it for later.
One such ceremony is the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which is set to take place on Sunday evening at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. This year will bring the total number of Screen Actors Guild Awards ceremonies to 26, just one shy of the total number of dresses for Katherine Heigl (who was SAG-nominated three straight years as part of the “Grey’s Anatomy” cast way back in the glory days of 2006-08). For those not fortunate enough to snag a ticket to actual event, those with a basic cable subscription can follow along on one of two sister networks: TNT and TBS, as well as on their corresponding apps.
Like other January staples, the SAGs give out awards in film and television categories. (Unlike other awards-giving bodies, SAG opted not to recognize “Succession” or “Little Women.” I know. It’s weird.) Following another year-opening tradition, the SAGs will also bestow their version of a lifetime achievement award (appropriately named the SAG Life Achievement Award) upon the young up-and-comer Robert De Niro, who somehow missed out on individual recognition for his work in “The Irishman,” but is noted as part of the film’s Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture nomination.
With a number of high-profile televised award shows switching to hostless telecasts, the last two years have seen the SAGs embrace having someone shepherd things along over the course of the evening. They broke with tradition in 2018 to bring in Kristen Bell as the first-ever host of the ceremony, with Megan Mullally taking over duties in 2019.
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There is no host for this edition of the SAG Awards, but in the absence of someone known for their comedy shepherding the ceremony through, maybe David Harbour can make another impassioned speech while his bewildered castmates look on. Or, at the very least, we can start the show by all pretending not to tear up at the traditional “I Am An Actor” opening sequence.