As a card carrying member of the Screen Actors Guild now for over 43 years, I take my privilege seriously. The Screen Actors Guild began having their own awards show twenty two years ago, and I feel honored to be able to vote each year. I also get the benefit of receiving movie screeners and my Hubby and I enjoy our at home cinema binge nights. But this is the first time I have ever documented it on social media.
For the past month each time we’d watch a film, I posted a pic for snapchat of the movie we were about to watch. Obviously for legal reasons, I didn’t post any video or any other pics besides an initial shot just to establish which film we were viewing. Then, yesterday when I did my due diligence and voted online, I included my snapchat friends in the process (btw, my snapchat username in case you want to follow along is: blissbakery). I didn’t show who I voted for, but they did see what the ballot looked like and the final “you’re done, voting complete” page.
I have always loved awards shows. The pomp and circumstance, the fashion, the anticipation, the emotion, the speeches, they all enthrall me. Wow, I get teared up just thinking about it! I have been lucky enough in my lifetime to have attended several awards shows. I went to the Grammys in 1984 the year Michael Jackson took home all the awards for the Thriller album. Then in 1985 I attended the 57th Academy Awards and witnessed the infamous acceptance speech by Sally Field when she said, “You like me”. I went to the 68th Academy Awards in 1996 when a paralyzed Christopher Reeves bravely got on stage and from his wheelchair gave the most incredible speech ever! Finally, I was able to join my dear friend Quincy Jones (who is also my son’s Godfather) at the Emmy Awards in 1996 as he was nominated for an award for producing the just mentioned Academy Awards show. True story, our limo broke down on the way there!
Watching the SAG awards tonight was a thrill! It is more engaging because I feel vested in the outcome. It was a fab show and is always a great precursor to the Academy Awards. Many of the winners go on to get the coveted Oscar! But what is different this year, is that many of those who won tonight, aren’t even nominated in the Academy Awards. Thus the controversy of lack of diversity, or as some call it, #OscarsSoWhite. Even in this LA Times’ winners recap article, the subject was blatantly broached and nothing held back. As if to say, “Hey Motion Picture Academy, what’s your problem?”
Besides shouting about it, when we have the right to vote, which is a privilege, we can quietly show our voice through that medium. Which is why voting in the United States political elections is also important to me even though I have lived abroad for eight years now. Absentee ballots are the way to go folks, no excuses! And being able to vote online for the SAG awards is an honor too which I don’t take lightly. Even if it is “entertainment” I believe it is food for the soul as we humans need a bit of fun too! And it is lovely to recognize the achievements of those that have truly captured an emotion, a character and an essence of a triumph of spirit.
I will do a complete analysis of the films for another post, but I just wanted to highlight a couple of individuals that received awards tonight. These actors truly touched me with their performances and left a haunting impression that is still palatable.
Brie Larson first caught my eye in the gripping independent film Short Term 12. But when I watched the inspiring mother son love in the powerful film Room, I knew this lady was going to take home some hardware this year (code for heavy awards statues). She underplayed the role of Ma with such nuance that it made me forget I was watching a movie. The mark of a great actor is to reel you in, take you on the journey and then leave you utterly transformed. Yes Brie, you did all that and more! Congrats on your well deserved SAG award and likely many more to come. Footnote, the film was based on a book by Irish writer Emma Donoghue (who also wrote the screenplay) and directed by Irishman Lenny Abrahamson! NO performance happens in a vacuum and Brie got plenty of support from Jacob Tremblay who played her son, and Lenny Abrahamson! P.S. You gotta love the Irish influence in cinema. Would be great to see more of it!
Leonardo DiCaprio has been a Hollywood darling for years. He is my darling for one reason only, because he is my younger brother’s doppelgänger. I must admit, I haven’t ever been that much of a fan. Sure he gives solid performances, but none of his films have tugged at my heart strings (though I have heard that his performance in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape would do just that). However, The Revenant, not only tugged at my heart strings, it tore my heart out, ate it up and spit it out! Sorry to be so descriptive, but if you see the film, my sentence will seem tame. I don’t know if I have ever seen a more gut wrenching film! It is harsh, both on the nerves, and also just watching the frigid weather on the screen made me cold. And poor Leo trudged through it all, whilst bleeding, starving and mourning. Without giving away the film, his character Hugh Glass, is practically reincarnated before our eyes. Very little dialogue, but so much emotion in this film. When people say Leo should win this Oscar as a gesture for such a long career without any accolades, I say no can do. Leo will win the Oscar for this film because he deserves it.
I hope you have garnered a little more insight into the SAG awards and check this space as I will give an analysis about the films nominated. Until then, thanks for reading!
Awarding you LOVE,