28th SAG Awards – Final Predictions

The 28th SAG Awards are this weekend, and it’s time to take a final look at the nominees in both film and television.

On the film side, the winners here could tell us what we need to know in the final weeks before the 94th Academy Awards. It will also be the first time this season that winners will have the chance to give their acceptance speeches in front of an audience. That will be key as academy members prepare to receive their final ballots soon.

There is a lot of time between now and the Emmys, so the TV side might not necessarily translate to future awards in the same way. But it will be a great way to cap off a great year of television.

Here are our final predictions for the 28th Sceen Actors Guild Awards.

The Motion Picture Nominees are:

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture

Image from CODA — Courtesy of Apple Original Films

It used to be that a film didn’t win the Oscar for Best Picture without a nomination for Cast Ensemble from SAG. That doesn’t hold true anymore, which will be good news for The Power of the Dog as we head into the final weeks before the Academy Awards. But a win here also doesn’t guarantee a Best Picture win next month. Since its inception in 1995, the winner of the Cast Ensemble award has gone on to win Best Picture 12 out of 27 times.

Of course, four of this year’s ensembles are also nominated for the coveted top prize, with House of Gucci being the only one not invited to the big show. Of this group, the one likeliest to prevail with AMPAS is Belfast, but at SAG it’s not as easy to say. Don’t Look Up has a sprawling landscape of celebrities, which certainly helped The Trial of the Chicago 7 this year. Similarly, King Richard and House of Gucci boast collections of talented and lauded names. But no group of actors has won over the hearts of Hollywood quite like the cast of CODA. And what better place to show them the love than this?

  • “Belfast” (Focus Features)
    Caitríona Balfe, Judi Dench, Jamie Dornan, Jude Hill, Ciarán Hinds, Colin Morgan
  • “CODA” (Apple Original Films)
    Eugenio Derbez, Daniel Durant, Emilia Jones, Troy Kotsur, Marlee Matlin, Ferdia Walsh-Peelo
  • “Don’t Look Up” (Netflix)
    Cate Blanchett, Timothée Chalamet, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ariana Grande, Jonah Hill, Jennifer Lawrence, Melanie Lynskey, Scott Mescudi, Rob Morgan, Himesh Patel, Ron Perlman, Tyler Perry, Mark Rylance, Meryl Streep
  • “House of Gucci” (MGM/United Artists Releasing)
    Adam Driver, Lady Gaga, Salma Hayek, Jack Huston, Jeremy Irons, Jared Leto, Al Pacino
  • “King Richard” (Warner Bros.)
    Jon Bernthal, Aunjanue Ellis, Tony Goldwyn, Saniyya Sidney, Demi Singleton, Will Smith

Predicted Winner: “CODA”
Could Win: “Don’t Look Up”
Should Have Been Nominated: “Mass,” “Nightmare Alley,” “The Power of the Dog”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role

Will Smith stars in KING RICHARD — Courtesy of Warner Bros.

There are still no locks for the Oscar, but this race really does seem to be down to Will Smith and Andrew Garfield. If one of them wins here, the ensuing acceptance speech will help them come as close as possible to locking up a win down the road. It definitely feels like Smith’s year, but don’t underestimate the groundswell of love for Andrew Garfield. And let’s be honest, his appearance in the latest Spider-Man flick just helped him even more.

  • Javier Bardem, “Being the Ricardos”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Power of the Dog”
  • Andrew Garfield, “Tick, tick…Boom!”
  • Will Smith, “King Richard”
  • Denzel Washington, “The Tragedy of Macbeth”

Predicted Winner: Will Smith
Could Win: Andrew Garfield
Should Have Been Nominated: Nicolas Cage, “Pig”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role


Lady Gaga stars in HOUSE OF GUCCI — Courtesy of MGM/United Artists Releasing

Anyone in the awards game can tell you this year, Best Actress is the toughest category to call. There’s a lot of buzz that SAG voters are pretty upset about the nominating committee leaving out Kristen Stewart, but there’s not much that can be done about that. It is important to note that the voting body of the Screen Actors Guild is made up not only of actors, but also radio personalities, TikTok’ers and other influencers. Do they love Lady Gaga enough to buck the Academy and dub her the Best Actress? A lot of people who aren’t on Film Twitter love Nicole Kidman’s performance as Lucille Ball and most experts see her as the likely winner, but we definitely can’t ignore recent winner Olivia Colman or the celebrated Jessica Chastain either. The one who seems farthest away from the stage is Jennifer Hudson, but that’s actually a reason not to count her out. The guild loves their surprises.

I’ll probably change my mind 85 times between now and showtime, but at the time of this writing, I think Gaga is on the edge of glory. (I know, I groaned while I wrote that.)

  • Jessica Chastain, “The Eyes of Tammy Faye”
  • Olivia Colman, “The Lost Daughter”
  • Lady Gaga, “House of Gucci”
  • Jennifer Hudson, “Respect”
  • Nicole Kidman, “Being the Ricardos”

Predicted Winner: Lady Gaga
Could Win: Nicole Kidman
Should Have Been Nominated: Tessa Thompson, “Passing”; Renate Reinsve, “The Worst Person in the World”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role

Kodi Smit-McPhee stars in THE POWER OF THE DOG — Courtesy of Netflix

Another race that feels like it’s down to two: Troy Kotsur and Kodi Smit-McPhee. I’m going with Smit-McPhee and my rationale here is that CODA will have its place in the spotlight at the end of the night, while this is the only place for SAG to really reward The Power of the Dog, which has really captured the industry’s attention. It’s close, but I think Kodi takes it.

  • Ben Affleck, “The Tender Bar”
  • Bradley Cooper, “Licorice Pizza”
  • Troy Kotsur, “CODA”
  • Jared Leto, “House of Gucci”
  • Kodi Smit-McPhee, “The Power of the Dog”

Predicted Winner: Kodi Smit-McPhee
Could Win: Troy Kotsur
Should Have Been Nominated: Colman Domingo, “Zola”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role

Ariana DeBose in WEST SIDE STORY — © 2021 20th Century Studios.

If there is one category where I feel pretty confident, it’s this one. Even though this is a truly spectacular lineup full of stellar performances. But here we are, 60 years after icon Rita Morena won an Oscar for the same role, Ariana DeBose is lighting up the screen and gathering fans along the way, turning this new version of Anita into something all her own.

  • Caitríona Balfe, “Belfast”
  • Cate Blanchett, “Nightmare Alley”
  • Ariana DeBose, “West Side Story”
  • Kirsten Dunst, “The Power of the Dog”
  • Ruth Negga, “Passing”

Predicted Winner: Ariana DeBose
Could Win: Kirsten Dunst
Should Have Been Nominated: This lineup is perfect, but also Jessie Buckley, “The Lost Daughter”

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture

Daniel Craig stars in NO TIME TO DIE — Courtesy of MGM

The closing chapter of Daniel Craig’s James Bond story seems poised to take the prize for Stunt Ensemble. There’s a lot of tough competition, but nothing else is quite like No Time to Die.

  • “Black Widow” (Marvel Studios)
  • “Dune” (Warner Bros.)
  • “The Matrix Resurrections” (Warner Bros.)
  • “No Time to Die” (MGM/United Artists Releasing)
  • “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” (Marvel Studios)

Predicted Winner: “No Time to Die”
Could Win: “Dune”
Should Have Been Nominated: “Spider-Man: No Way Home”

The Television Program Nominees are:

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series


Lee Jung-jae, Park Hae-soo, Oh Young-soo star in SQUID GAME
Noh Juhan | Netflix

Everyone, and I mean everyone, has been captivated by the Korean series Squid Game. Even elementary school kids are watching this show, which is a frightening thought, but tells you just how far and wide its popularity has spread. The rest of these ensembles are great too, but we have a very strong frontrunner here.

  • “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Hulu)
    Alexis Bledel, Madeline Brewer, Amanda Brugel, Ann Dowd, O-T Fagbenle, Joseph Fiennes, Sam Jaeger, Max Minghella, Elisabeth Moss, Yvonne Strahovski, Bradley Whitford, Samira Wiley
  • “The Morning Show” (Apple TV+)
    Jennifer Aniston, Shari Belafonte, Eli Bildner, Nestor Carbonell, Steve Carell, Billy Crudup, Mark Duplass, Amber Friendly, Janina Gavankar, Valeria Golino, Tara Karsian, Hannah Leder, Greta Lee, Julianna Margulies, Joe Marinelli, Michelle Meredith, Ruairi O’Connor, Joe Pacheco, Karen Pittman, Victoria Tate, Desean K. Terry, Reese Witherspoon
  • “Squid Game” (Netflix)
    Heo Sung-tae, Jun Young-soo, Jung Ho-yeon, Kim Joo-Ryung, Lee Byung-hun, Lee Jung-jae, Oh Young-soo, Park Hae-soo, Anupam Tripathi, Wi Ha-jun
  • “Succession” (HBO)
    Hiam Abbass, Nicholas Braun, Juliana Canfield, Brian Cox, Kieran Culkin, Dagmara Dominczyk, Peter Friedman, Jihae, Justine Lupe, Matthew Macfadyen, Dasha Nekrasova, Scott Nicholson, David Rasche, Alan Ruck, J. Smith-Cameron, Sarah Snook, Fisher Stevens, Jeremy Strong, Zoë Winters
  • “Yellowstone” (Paramount Network)
    Kelsey Asbille, Wes Bentley, Ryan Bingham, Gil Birmingham, Ian Bohen, Eden Brolin, Kevin Costner, Hugh Dillon, Luke Grimes, Hassie Harrison, Cole Hauser, Jen Landon, Finn Little, Brecken Merrill, Will Patton, Piper Perabo, Kelly Reilly, Denim Richards, Taylor Sheridan, Forrie J. Smith, Jefferson White

Predicted Winner: “Squid Game”
Could Win: “Succession”
Should Have Been Nominated: “Yellowjackets” (Showtime)

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series

Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez star in ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING — Courtesy of Hulu

Another fantastic category full of fantastic actors, there are so many directions this could go. Obviously the love for Ted Lasso continues unabated as the second season, even while it was much darker than the first, showcased the brilliance of its writers and especially its performers, giving opportunities for some of the background characters to step into the spotlight. There was some sense throughout the second half of last year that Ted Lasso was taking away some of the attention that deserved to go to Hacks. But then came the reunion of Steve Martin and Martin Short in a show that didn’t hold back, even going so far as to turn *Sting* into a murder suspect. It’s easy to say “Ted Lasso” wins this, but I think SAG really wants to see Martin, Short, and Gomez up on that stage.

  • “The Great” (Hulu)
    Julian Barratt, Belinda Bromilow, Sacha Dhawan, Elle Fanning, Phoebe Fox, Bayo Gbadamosi, Adam Godley, Douglas Hodge, Nicholas Hoult, Florence Keith-Roach, Gwilym Lee, Charity Wakefield
  • “Hacks” (HBO Max)
    Rose Abdoo, Carl Clemons-Hopkins, Paul W. Downs, Hannah Einbinder, Mark Indelicato, Poppy Liu, Chris McDonald, Jean Smart, Megan Stalter
  • “The Kominsky Method” (Netflix)
    Jenna Lyng Adams, Sarah Baker, Casey Thomas Brown, Michael Douglas, Lisa Edelstein, Ashleigh LaThrop, Emily Osment, Haley Joel Osment, Paul Reiser, Graham Rogers, Melissa Tang, Kathleen Turner
  • “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu)
    Aaron Dominguez, Selena Gomez, Jackie Hoffman, Jayne Houdyshell, Steve Martin, Amy Ryan, Martin Short
  • “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV+)
    Annette Badland, Kola Bokinni, Phil Dunster, Cristo Fernández, Brett Goldstein, Brendan Hunt, Toheeb Jimoh, Nick Mohammed, Sarah Niles, Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Swift, Juno Temple, Hannah Waddingham

Predicted Winner: “Only Murders in the Building”
Could Win: “Ted Lasso”
Should Have Been Nominated: “What We Do in the Shadows”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series

Jeremy Strong stars in SUCCESSION — Courtesy of HBO

It’s possible for the men from Succession to split votes and open the door for someone else, but it’s not likely. Jeremy Strong took Kendall Roy to a whole new level in the third season of HBO’s drama. And when pairing that with the outpouring of support he received after a certain less-than-flattering profile about his particular brand of character development, that work will be richly rewarded with another statuette for his mantle.

  • Brian Cox, “Succession”
  • Billy Crudup, “The Morning Show”
  • Kieran Culkin, “Succession”
  • Lee Jung-jae, “Squid Game”
  • Jeremy Strong, “Succession”

Predicted Winner: Jeremy Strong
Could Win: Brian Cox
Should Have Been Nominated: Billy Porter, “Pose”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series

Sarah Snook stars in SUCCESSION — Courtesy of HBO

While the men have been getting all the attention, Sarah Snook has positioned herself as an equal match, turning her Shiv Roy into someone you want to root for, but also you don’t, but you definitely do. The actors’ guild loves Jennifer Aniston, and a lot of prognosticators think she could be repeating her win. It would be pretty exciting to see Jung Ho-yeon singled out from her castmates, but it’s not likely.

  • Jennifer Aniston, “The Morning Show”
  • Jung Ho-yeon, “Squid Game”
  • Elisabeth Moss, “The Handmaid’s Tale”
  • Sarah Snook, “Succession”
  • Reese Witherspoon, “The Morning Show”

Predicted Winner: Sarah Snook
Could Win: Jennifer Aniston
Should Have Been Nominated: Melanie Lynskey, “Yellowjackets”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series

Steve Martin stars in ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING — Courtesy of Hulu

Steve Martin made a very welcome return to television alongside his co-star Martin Short. They’ll probably split some votes, but then, so will Jason Sudeikis and his beloved co-star Brett Goldstein. It’ll probably be tight, but my gut says they go with Steve Martin who had a bit more of a full story arc than Short did. But I feel pretty unsure about this one. May as well toss a coin.

  • Michael Douglas, “The Kominsky Method”
  • Brett Goldstein, “Ted Lasso”
  • Steve Martin, “Only Murders in the Building”
  • Martin Short, “Only Murders in the Building”
  • Jason Sudeikis, “Ted Lasso”

Predicted Winner: Steve Martin
Could Win: Brett Goldstein
Should Have Been Nominated: Harvey Guillén, “What We Do in the Shadows”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series

Hannah Einbinder and Jean Smart star in HACKS; Photograph by Jake Giles Netter/HBO Max

Everyone loves Rebecca, and Hannah Waddingham breathes so much life into a character that could easily have been flat and uninteresting. And her journey through the second season only made everyone adore her even more. But seeing her matched up with the incredible Jean Smart? It’s a tough call, but this is also the only place for SAG to reward both Hacks and Smart, who is a double nominee.

  • Elle Fanning, “The Great”
  • Sandra Oh, “The Chair”
  • Jean Smart, “Hacks”
  • Juno Temple, “Ted Lasso”
  • Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso”

Predicted Winner: Jean Smart
Could Win: Hannah Waddingham
Should Have Been Nominated: Natasia Demetriou, “What We Do in the Shadows”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series

Michael Keaton stars in DOPESICK — Courtesy of Hulu


  • Murray Bartlett, “The White Lotus”
  • Oscar Isaac, “Scenes from a Marriage”
  • Michael Keaton, “Dopesick”
  • Ewan McGregor, “Halston”
  • Evan Peters, “Mare of Easttown”

Predicted Winner: Michael Keaton
Could Win: Murray Bartlett
Should Have Been Nominated: Hamish Linklater, “Midnight Mass”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series

Kate Winslet stars in MARE OF EASTTOWN — Courtesy of HBO


  • Jennifer Coolidge, “The White Lotus”
  • Cynthia Erivo, “Genius: Aretha”
  • Margaret Qualley, “Maid”
  • Jean Smart, “Mare of Easttown”
  • Kate Winslet, “Mare of Easttown”

Predicted Winner: Kate Winslet
Could Win: Jennifer Coolidge
Should Have Been Nominated: Hailee Steinfeld, “Hawkeye”

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series

  • “Cobra Kai” (Netflix)
  • “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” (Disney+)
  • “Loki” (Disney+)
  • “Mare of Easttown” (HBO)
  • “Squid Game” (Netflix)

Predicted Winner: “Squid Game:
Could Win: “Loki”
Should Have Been Nominated: “Hawkeye”

The 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards will air this Sunday, February 27 at 8pm ET/5pm PT on TNT and TBS. You can also watch the show the next day on HBO Max.

Written by
Karen Peterson is the Awards Editor for We Live Entertainment. She previously worked as the Assistant Editor at Awards Circuit, now owned by Variety. Her work can also be found at Citizen Dame and at the Watch and Talk podcast. Her non-awards season hobbies include Angels baseball, taking pictures of other peoples' pets, and tweeting about The Bachelor franchise.

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