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Black Panther scores top prize at Screen Actors Guild Awards

The film won for best ensemble cast, defeating A Star Is Born, BlacKkKlansman, Bohemian Rhapsody and Crazy Rich Asians.

The 25th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Press Room The cast of Black Panther at the SAG Awards Source: Jim Ruymen/UPI via PA Images

SUPERHERO BLOCKBUSTER BLACK Panther has won the top prize at the Screen Actors Guild Awards – a major boost to its campaign for Oscars glory next month.

The film won for best ensemble cast, defeating musical romance A Star Is Born, Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman, Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody and rom-com Crazy Rich Asians.

Chadwick Boseman, who plays the title role in what was the top-grossing film in North America in 2018, explained the film’s significance alongside his co-stars, nearly all of them black.

“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 told the audience at the Shrine Auditorium.

“We knew that we had something special that we wanted to give the world – that we could be full human beings in the roles that we were playing, that we could create a world that exemplified a world we wanted to see.”

Black Panther also won for best stunt ensemble.

This year, the SAG Awards come at a key point in the race to next month’s Academy Awards – just after the Oscars nominations, and well before voting for the winners begins.

The Screen Actors Guild accounts for a major percentage of the 8,000-odd Oscar voters, so the SAG winners will earn a lot of awards season momentum.

The Favourite, the period firm co-produced by Irish company Element Pictures, came home empty-handed. 

The film has been nominated for 10 awards at this year’s Academy Awards and Olivia Colman, who plays Queen Anne in the film, scooped up a Golden Globe for her role. 

Colman and Rachel Weisz were both nominated for best supporting actress at the SAG Awards. 

Sure bets and surprises

While SAG-winning casts have only gone on to win a best picture Oscar about half the time, the awards are better at predicting best actor winners 79% and best actress 75%.

Glenn Close solidified her frontrunner status in the race for the best actress Oscar with a win for her searing work in The Wife.

So far this awards season, she has also won a Golden Globe and a Critics’ Choice Award. 

25th Annual SAG Awards - Show Rami Malek accepts the award for outstanding performance by a male actor in a leading role for Bohemian Rhapsody Source: Richard Shotwell via PA Images

For best actor, Rami Malek’s star-making turn as Queen frontman Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody was rewarded – over Christian Bale’s work in another biopic, as former US vice president Dick Cheney in Vice.

“I just never in my wildest dreams thought I could be in a category with these men,” said Malek, who also won a Golden Globe for the role and is nominated for an Oscar.

Mahershala Ali continued his march to the Oscars by taking the best supporting actor trophy for his work in civil rights dramedy Green Book.

Emily Blunt meanwhile pulled off a major upset, winning the statuette for best-supporting actress for A Quiet Place, an innovative horror film directed by her husband and co-star, John Krasinski. 

Here are the major SAG Awards winners last night: 

Film

  • Best ensemble cast: Black Panther
  • Best actor: Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody
  • Best actress: Glenn Close, The Wife
  • Best supporting actor: Mahershala Ali, Green Book
  • Best supporting actress: Emily Blunt, A Quiet Place
  • Best stunt ensemble: Black Panther

Television

  • Best ensemble, drama: This Is Us
  • Best ensemble, comedy: The Marvelous Mrs Maisel
  • Best actor, drama: Jason Bateman, Ozark
  • Best actress, drama: Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
  • Best actor, comedy: Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs Maisel
  • Best actress, comedy: Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs Maisel
  • Best actor, TV movie or limited series: Darren Criss, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story
  • Best actress, TV movie or limited series: Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannemora

© AFP 2019 with reporting by Hayley Halpin

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