The Screen Actors Guild Awards -- the Hollywood awards show where actors honor their own -- is considered one of the more reliable predictors of Oscar gold, in part because actors represent such a large voting block in the motion picture academy.
The show is also, in contrast to the often tart and freewheeling Golden Globes, a major love fest. There’s no host making cutting jokes about the nominees and no music cutting off the speeches. And there is usually at least one moment when someone holds up a SAG card.
Here are five more moments to watch for at this year’s SAG Awards, which starts at 5 p.m. Pacific on Saturday at L.A.'s Shrine Exposition Center, and airs on TBS and TNT.
1) Cast rank: The prize for performance by a cast in a motion picture is the category that often predicts Oscar’s best picture, and this year’s nominees are the slave drama “12 Years a Slave,” con man tale “American Hustle,” play adaptation “August: Osage County,” AIDS drama “Dallas Buyers Club” and historical film “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.” This is the prize Oscar prognosticators watch closely and will likely pit the lesser-known actors of Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” against David O. Russell’s starry group in “American Hustle.”
2) Rita’s view: Rita Moreno, 82, will receive SAG’s Life Achievement Award. Expect some candor from the Puerto Rico-born actress, dancer and singer, best known for playing the role of Anita in “West Side Story,” who has talked openly about the challenges she faced as a Latino woman in Hollywood.
3) Hanks’ humor: After beating the bushes for two movies this awards season, “Captain Phillips” and “Saving Mr. Banks,” Tom Hanks ended up without an Oscar nomination. But he is up for male actor in a leading role for “Captain Phillips” at the SAG Awards, alongside Oscar nominees Bruce Dern (“Nebraska”), Chiwetel Ejiofor (“12 Years a Slave”) and Matthew McConaughey (“Dallas Buyers Club”), as well as fellow snub-ee Forest Whitaker (“Lee Daniels’ The Butler”). Keep an eye on Hanks -- or Tam Honks, as Amy Poehler jokingly mis-dubbed him at the Golden Globes.
4) Meryl’s manners: Speaking of snubs, the Oscar nominations for lead actress were widely expected to mirror SAG’s honorees in the category: Cate Blanchett (“Blue Jasmine”), Sandra Bullock (“Gravity”), Judi Dench (“Philomena”), Meryl Streep (“August: Osage County”) and Emma Thompson (“Saving Mr. Banks”). But on Oscar nominations morning, Thompson was left off in favor of “American Hustle’s” Amy Adams, an omission some speculated might have to do with a speech Streep made about “Saving Mr. Banks” character Walt Disney. With Streep up against Thompson at the SAG Awards, a win for either could provide an opportunity for a make-up speech.
5) Man-buns: Among the biggest fashion controversies on Golden Globes night was the presence of two men wearing their hair in a manner usually associated with Ma from “Little House on the Prairie.” One of them, Jared Leto, is up for a SAG award for male actor in a supporting role for his performance in “Dallas Buyers Club.” Leto may beat fellow nominees Barkhad Abdi (“Captain Phillips”), Daniel Bruhl (“Rush”), Michael Fassbender (“12 Years A Slave”) and James Gandolfini (“Enough Said”), but whether he’ll do it with his hair up or down is as important to many this awards season.