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Oscar ‘favorites’ McConaughey, Leto win SAG awards for ‘Dallas Buyers Club’

'American Hustle' wins top honor; Michael Douglas wins for Liberace biopic, 'Modern Family' wins for comedy ensemble
Saturday, January 18, 2014
Photos: Matt Sayles, Invision (AP)Matthew McConaughey (left) and Jared Leto take home Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, for their performances in "The Dallas Buyers Club."

Photos: Matt Sayles, Invision (AP)
Matthew McConaughey (left) and Jared Leto take home Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, for their performances in “The Dallas Buyers Club.”

David O. Russell’s “American Hustle” has won the Screen Actors Guild award for outstanding cast, setting up the con-artist comedy as the film to beat at the Academy Awards.

The other nominees Saturday night at the ceremony at Los Angeles’ Shrine Auditorium were “12 Years a Slave,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “August: Osage County” and “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.” Because actors making up the largest branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the SAG Awards are considered one of the most predictive tea leaves of the Oscars.

Saturday’s awards were a somewhat low-key affair with a few memorable speeches but no earthquakes in a rapidly solidifying award season. The night’s acting winners – Matthew McConaughey (“Dallas Buyers Club”), Cate Blanchett (“Blue Jasmine”), Lupita Nyong’o (“12 Years a Slave”) and Jared Leto (“Dallas Buyers Club”) – are each probably the favorites of their categories.

Matt Sayles, Invision (AP)Matt Damon and Michael Douglas Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday.

Matt Sayles, Invision (AP)
Matt Damon and Michael Douglas Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday.

Frank Micelotta, Invision (AP)From left, Rico Rodriguez, Julie Bowen, Ariel Winter, Sofia Vergara, Ed O'Neill, Sarah Hyland, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, Nolan Gould and Ty Burrell accept the award for outstanding performance by an ensemble in a comedy series for "Modern Family."

Frank Micelotta, Invision (AP)
From left, Rico Rodriguez, Julie Bowen, Ariel Winter, Sofia Vergara, Ed O’Neill, Sarah Hyland, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, Nolan Gould and Ty Burrell accept the award for outstanding performance by an ensemble in a comedy series for “Modern Family.”

“It really shines a great light on this bull ride we call acting,” said McConaughey, honored for lead actor in the Texas HIV drama. “I’ve been able to recently find some characters that I can humble myself to their humanities and get feverishly drunk on their obsessions.”

Coming two days after Academy Award nominations, the SAG Awards are particularly monitored for predicting Oscar momentum. The outstanding cast category, the night’s top honor, was perhaps a showdown between “American Hustle” and “12 Years a Slave.” The two very different films were kept separated by drama and comedy categories at the Golden Globes.

Nyong’o won for supporting actress for her performance as the singular slave Patsy in Steve McQueen’s historical drama. She thanked McQueen “for taking a flashlight and shining it underneath the floorboards of this nation and reminding us what it is we stand on.”

The Kenyan actress, who has been hailed for her red-carpet grace this awards season, recalled her celebratory phone call to her father when she got the part – her first feature film.

“‘Daddy, do you know who Brad Pitt is? I’m going to be in a movie with him!’” recalled Nyong’o. “And he said, ‘I don’t know him personally, but I’m glad you got a job.’”

Leto was honored for supporting actor for playing the gaunt transsexual Rayon, alongside McConaughey’s Texas cowboy. He dedicated the award to those who have died of AIDS and to “the Rayons of the world.”

The “Breaking Bad” victory lap continued as the show took honors for outstanding dramatic cast and for lead actor Bryan Cranston. For his indelible performance as teacher-turned-meth dealer, Cranston added his second lead actor SAG Award, to go with his recent Golden Globe win and his numerous Emmys.

SAG Award Winners:

Motion Pictures:

  • Actor: Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”
  • Actress: Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
  • Supporting actor: Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”
  • Supporting actress: Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”
  • Cast: “American Hustle”
  • Stunt ensemble: “Lone Survivor”

Television:

  • Actor in a comedy series: Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”
  • Actress in a comedy series: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”
  • Comedy series cast: “Modern Family”
  • Actor in a movie or miniseries: Michael Douglas, “Behind the Candelabra”
  • Actress in a movie or miniseries: Helen Mirren, “Phil Spector”
  • Drama series cast: “Breaking Bad”
  • Actor in a drama series: Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad”
  • Actress in a drama series: Maggie Smith, “Downton Abbey”
  • Stunt ensemble: “Game of Thrones”

Previously announced:

Life Achievement Award: Rita Moreno.

“We have the nicest bunch of white supremacist Nazis I have ever worked with,” said Cranston, looking over his former cast mates. “I swear to you I would kill you all over again.”

Two big-screen veterans won awards for TV film s: Michael Douglas for HBO’s Liberace drama “Behind the Candelabra,” and Helen Mirren for the biopic “Phil Spector,” also on HBO.

“I am not here without Matt Damon,” said Douglas, after making a gay sex pun that made his co-star wince.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus has been a mainstay at award shows recently, both for her acclaimed HBO series “Veep” (for which she won an Emmy) and the romantic comedy “Enough Said” (for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe). She won a SAG trophy for female actor in a comedy series for “Veep,” and slyly mocked the award season crush by first thanking the Hollywood Foreign Press and then the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

“It’s hard you know because it’s awards season and things get confusing, much like elections,” said Louis-Dreyfus. It’s the sixth SAG Award for the former “Seinfeld” star, whose “Enough Said” co-star James Gandolfini was nominated posthumously for his supporting performance.

The ABC sitcom ” Modern Family” enjoyed another round of awards, winning for ensemble in a comedy series and taking the male actor in a comedy series honor for Ty Burrell.

SAG and the academy don’t always agree: Neither “August: Osage County” nor “The Butler” were nominated for best picture, and “The Butler” was snubbed entirely. The effects-heavy, sparsely peopled “Gravity” was predictably overlooked by SAG (except for a best actress nomination to Sandra Bullock), while it garnered 10 Oscar nods.

The SAG Awards are one of the more collegial stops on the awards circuit, with winners almost uniformly express gratitude for an honor chosen by their peers. A good speech (like Nyong’o's) can help stoke Oscar support.

Emma Thompson, a surprise snub in Thursday’s Oscar nominations for the “Mary Poppins” making-of tale “Saving Mr. Banks,” was just as much the witty, winning award-show attendee she’s been all season. As a presenter, the lead actress nominee noted the show’s cheesy e levator music soundtrack: “Is this music available on CD?”

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SAG’s lifetime achievement award was given to Rita Moreno, the 81-year-old “West Side Story” actress whose career has spanned Broadway, television and music. Introduced by Morgan Freeman, the much-honored Latina legend danced to the podium before a standing ovation and let out a gleeful expletive.

“I hope the man with the button was there,” she said. (He was.)

Moreno serenaded the SAG audience with a few bars from “This Is All I Ask”:

“And let the music play/ As long as there’s a song to sing/ And I will stay younger than spring.”

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29 more reader comments:

  1. so now we know why all this gay hate is coming from..we’re too faaaabulous :* We Are Everywhere..kiss my grits Vladimir Putin :*

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:40am
  2. “You just gotta keep livin’ man, L-I-V-I-N.”

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:40am
  3. I like that updated oscar statue. Much more erotic

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:41am
  4. That's not an Oscar, it's the Screen Actor's Guild award.

    Replied on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 12:14pm
  5. yea i love those indeed (modern family+american hustle)

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:41am
  6. Cut that hair!!!!!!

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:41am
  7. No way , perfection ! Woot woot

    Replied on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:56am
  8. His hair looks cool... leave him be. Hell, 99% of men over 40 probably WISH they could grow hair like that!

    Replied on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 6:55pm
  9. Behind the Candelabra didn’t really impress me,though Matt Damon is hot as ever.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:48am
  10. beautiful movie brough back so many memories of the time..to see beautiful viral men fade away before your eyes..Bravo to both of them ..

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 4:51am
  11. mmm no Butlers no 12 twelve years ?

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:08am
  12. i am most proud of McConaughey!! The dude let go of his looks tremendously for this role! Getting a muscle body he had before is not easy… I have always knocked him down as an actor, but this is real dedication to your job! HOLY MOLY!

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:35am
  13. Is anyone else jealous of Jared Leto’s hair??
    Because it’s perfect, and I want it.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:40am
  14. Congrats to them

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:45am
  15. Jared Leto is in a league all by himself !

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:57am
  16. Handsome gentle-men!

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 6:25am
  17. Dallas Buyers Club was heinous. Enough of cis actors playing trans characters – we get so little decent screen time anywhere, it would be nice to have visibility for some of our own.

    Not to mention Jared Leto’s stupid comments since – he could have used this as a great opportunity to raise awareness for trans rights and healthcare but instead he’s spent the whole time going ‘hurr hurr no homo.’

    Disgusting

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 7:52am
  18. I and my page love LGBTQ.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 10:26am
  19. Oscars next. Fantastic movie.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 12:16pm
  20. why do gay men get a certain silly look? lol

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 12:23pm
  21. why do women named Cheryl Ahmed ask certain idiotic questions? lol

    Replied on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 6:57pm
  22. Leto looks like Jesus… wow.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 5:30pm
  23. Megyn Kelly... is that you?? :-/

    Replied on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 6:56pm
  24. Thank you, Freddie a Young IV! As a gay man I do not know what Cheryl is talking about.

    Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 6:59pm
  25. Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 12:55am
  26. Lori doesn’t Jared leto look like Talon here? Haha

    Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 12:59am
  27. yes, Jordan I see it wow

    Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 1:11am
  28. Matthew was great but the film is atrocious, as is Leto’s shallow performance.

    Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 1:32am
  29. OH MY GOD !!! Adam Curry was so EFFING GORGEOUS back then! And here’s a tantalizing tidbit from Wikipedia: Curry describes himself as a ‘bi-curious male’ but is currently considering the term “Hetero Flexible”.

    Suzy’s heart is all PITTER-PATTER !

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIFC4hxgjRg

    Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 1:53am