After the SAG Awards last night, Everything Everywhere All At Once is officially the Best Picture frontrunner. Sure, Top Gun: Maverick won the stunt ensemble award, but EEAAO won four awards, taking three of the four individual acting awards for motion pictures, including Ke Huy Quan for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role, Jamie Lee Curtis for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, and Michelle Yeoh for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role (more on her later). Added to those three individual awards is the ensemble award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, which makes EEAAO the most-awarded film in SAG history with four wins in total.
The Producers Guild Awards were also over the weekend, and EEAAO won the Daryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures, adding to their previous win at the Directors Guild Awards for the EEAAO directing duo, Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, aka The Daniels. That means EEAAO bagged every major guild award in town. Historically, this makes it a lock for Best Picture. The only film to win at the DGA, PGA, and SAG and NOT win Best Picture is Apollo 13 (it lost to Braveheart). I still have a little wiggle in my gut about how everyone feels about Top Gun: Maverick saving movie theaters, but, on the other end of the scale, EEAAO made $107 million and is one of the only bright spots in the indie sector lately. It was a hit, too, people went to theaters for it, too. Maybe it didn’t save the entire theatrical distribution business, but it is a key pillar propping up the indie sector right now, and the people who make movies know that.
As has been the case all awards season, Best Supporting Actor presumptive winner Ke Huy Quan is an utter delight at the winner’s podium. He’s the first Asian actor to win in his category, but he made his speech about the collective effort it took to not only get him to that podium, but to get EEAAO made in the first place.
The sincerity of this man! No one will be able to resist his heartwarming comeback narrative, or his sincere and unabashed excitement to be acting once again. In an interview with Kyle Buchanan in The New York Times, he talked about continuing to pay his monthly SAG dues even after he stopped acting, saying, “Maybe subconsciously, I was thinking, just be patient.” How can you resist capping off his incredible comeback with an Oscar win? You can’t! Best Supporting Actor is the only acting race that is locked in. Ke Huy Quan has it.
Because the SAG Awards threw both the actress races into turmoil. We’ll get to Michelle Yeoh in a separate post, so let’s talk about the chaos of Best Supporting Actress. Angela Bassett was the presumptive favorite going into the weekend (and she did win three awards at the NAACP Image Awards on Saturday night, including one for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever), but there is not really a consensus in this category. Bassett won the Golden Globe and Critics Choice Awards, but Kerry Condon won the BAFTA, and now, Jamie Lee Curtis won the SAG. That’s a three-way split between the top precursor awards. Anything can happen on Oscar night!
We talk about these award campaigns like political races, because they ARE. If you’ve ever been in LA during awards season, you know that campaigning for an Oscar looks just like a mayoral race. So it matters who wins what and where, and what kind of speech they give. Jamie Lee Curtis gave a GREAT speech, making a nepo baby joke, acknowledging Michelle Yeoh, praising her fellow actors, and pointing out that she is 64 and this is her first SAG win. The nepo baby joke is solid, but she also subtly reminded people how long it took her to make it to that stage, that just because her parents were huge stars, her path wasn’t always easy (just easier). Angela Bassett also has a “long road to this night” narrative, though, so it’s really going to come down to the personal preference of the voters, and as a reminder, no one has won an acting award for a Marvel movie at the Oscars.
And then there was the big win, which some dipsh-t at SAG-AFTRA entrusted to Mark F-cking Wahlberg, who called Women Talking “Women ARE Talking”, like dude can’t even be bothered to know the names of the movies he’s announcing. What I can’t decide, though, is if having a guy convicted of felony assault against an Asian man announce a category at an awards show where there is the possibility of a predominately Asian cast winning is a genius or boneheaded move. On the one hand: “Women ARE Talking”. On the other hand: Wahlberg had to stand there while James Hong spoke Cantonese and acknowledged the audience watching from Hong Kong.
An awesome moment where his fellow cast-mates honored him, and deservedly so. Give it up for the titan that is James Hong! #SAGAwards2023 #EverythingEverywhereAllAtOnce #JamesHong pic.twitter.com/RWAzJmXqUI— SAG AwardsÂ® (@SAGawards) February 27, 2023
So EEAAO is now the presumptive Best Picture favorite. Oscar voting starts on Thursday. Except for Ke Huy Quan, it feels like anything can happen.
See the full list of winners here.