By Jason Abdow

12/14/2016

This morning the nominations for the 23rd Screen Actors Guild Awards were announced to honor the best performances in film this year. The nominations, as well as the eventual winners, are decided by members of the Screen Actors Guild, meaning these are all exclusively voted by actors, many of whom vote for the Academy Awards.

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
-Casey Affleck, “Manchester by the Sea”
-Andrew Garfield, “Hacksaw Ridge”
-Ryan Gosling, “La La Land”
-Viggo Mortensen, “Captain Fantastic”
-Denzel Washington, “Fences”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
-Amy Adams, “Arrival”
-Emily Blunt, “The Girl on the Train”
-Natalie Portman, “Jackie”
-Emma Stone, “La La Land”
-Meryl Streep, “Florence Foster Jenkins”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
-Mahershala Ali, “Moonlight”
-Jeff Bridges, “Hell or High Water”
-Hugh Grant, “Florence Foster Jenkins”
-Lucas Hedges, “Manchester by the Sea”
-Dev Patel, “Lion”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
-Viola Davis, “Fences”
-Naomie Harris, “Moonlight”
-Nicole Kidman, “Lion”
-Octavia Spencer, “Hidden Figures”
-Michelle Williams, “Manchester by the Sea”

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
-“Captain Fantastic”
-“Fences”
-“Hidden Figures”
-“Manchester by the Sea”
-“Moonlight”

The nominees for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role mostly reaffirmed many of the frontrunners laid out by the Golden Globes. Casey Affleck and Denzel Washington seem to be the two frontrunners, for “Manchester by the Sea” and “Fences, respectively. Ryan Gosling’s nomination for “La La Land” also helps cement his road to his second Oscar nod. The same can go for Viggo Mortensen’s nomination for “Captain Fantastic, which I am glad has gotten the recognition it deserves. Hoping to get his first nomination, years after being snubbed for “The Social Network, is Andrew Garfield for “Hacksaw Ridge, the latest attempt at a comeback from Mel Gibson as a director.

The Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role category did offer a little bit of surprise. The biggest shock being Emily Blunt’s “The Girl on the Train” nomination, which most people had written offs. Could this mean Blunt will be able to overcome the movie’s bad reviews and get recognized for the Oscars? Meryl Steep’s nomination for “Florence Foster Jenkins” makes it seem more likely she will increase her currently record for most Oscar nominations for an actress. Natalie Portman’s portrait of Jackie Kennedy in “Jackie” and Emma Stone’s performance in “La La Land” seem to be the two frontrunners, with a chance of Amy Adams sneaking in for “Arrival.

Despite his nomination as a lead actor for the Golden Globes, it looks like Hugh Grant will be campaigning as a supporting actor for “Florence Foster Jenkins, after getting a nod for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role. Grant’s veteran status could make him a contender against frontrunner Mahershala Ali for “Moonlight. Ali recently won the Critics Choice Award for this category and has quickly made a name for himself by working on both the big and small screen. Another veteran who could become a contender is Jeff Bridges for “Hell or High Water. After a nomination for the Golden Globes, it looks like Dev Patel has a good shot at getting nominated for “Lion, thanks to a strong push from the Weinstein Company. Rounding out the list, 19 year old Lucas Hedges got his first SAG nomination for “Manchester by the Sea.”

The category for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role is identical to what the Golden Globes nominated. This might mean this is our lineup on nominees come Oscar time. Viola Davis is likely the frontrunner for “Fences” with Michelle Williams also a strong contender for “Manchester by the Sea.” Naomi Harris also seems to have a strong shot of getting recognized for “Moonlight.” While she will likely not win, Octavia Spencer seems to be the strong awards contender in “Hidden Figures. Similar to Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman’s nomination for “Lion” is due to the Weinstein Company’s heavy campaigning.

The biggest category of the bunch is Outstanding Performance by a Cast, which recognizes the best ensembles and usually coincides with Best Picture at the Academy Awards. I was pleasantly shocked by “Captain Fantastic” getting a nod, but considering the performances given by the many young actors in that film, it is well deserved. “Hidden Figures” was also a little bit of a surprised, but considering that film’s all-star cast the nomination seems just. “Fences” is likely a decent contender, with several of the supporting actors doing career best work, as well as Denzel Washington and Viola Davis’ heavy-hitting work. “Manchester by the Sea” and “Moonlight” are the two frontrunners, with “Manchester” having the slight edge, in my opinion. They are both seen as possible winners for Best Picture for the Oscars.

The biggest absence would be “La La Land” missing out for Outstanding Performance by a Cast, seeing as most thought it was the frontrunner for the Academy Award for Best Picture. While Martin Scorsese’s “Silence” is likely absent because of the lack of available screenings, the omission of “Loving” and “The Birth of a Nation” are tough to see. Annette Bening’s snub for “20th Century Women” will definitely hurt her chances at an Oscar win down the road this year. Also, after missing out on the this and the Golden Globes, Tom Hanks‘ chances of an Oscar nod for “Sully” have almost vanished.

The winners for the Screen Actors Guild will be announced on January 29, 2017 and will air on TNT and TBS.