SAG Awards 2012: Did "The Help" Change The Oscar Game?
The biggest award of the night, Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, is what shook things up as The Help was named winner (Oscar fave The Artist was predicted to win, but went home light on awards with only one win for Jean Dujardin for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role, and two-time Golden Globe winner The Descendants walked away empty-handed). Viola Davis spoke on behalf of the ensemble, admitting that working on the set was such a pleasure because "all the actors gave up their egos." It was short and sweet, and she told her audience that "all of us can inpsire change."
The cast of The Help sure did get a lot of screen time (which they deserved every second of). While on her way up to the stage to accept her award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role, Davis received a standing ovation from her fellow actors. As she scanned the crowd in appreciation, she started off her speech by naming women who have inspired her, including Cicely Tyson (who plays Constantine in the film) and best friend Meryl Streep (also her fellow nominee for her performance in The Iron Lady). Davis was extremely humble, and encouraged those listening to "dream big and dream fierce."
Rounding out The Help's triple victory was Octavia Spencer, winning Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role. In her articulate speech filled with humility, humor, and charm, she praised working on a film that gave a voice to so many women. "By honoring me, you're honoring them." Spencer also dedicated her award to those who are overtaxed - emotionally, physically, and financially. And her acceptance would not be complete without an "OH MY GOOOOOD!" to wrap things up.
The evening had its fair share of winners who had taken home Golden Globes earlier this month (mainly in the television categories), including Beginners' Christopher Plummer for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role, Modern Family for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series, Mildred Pierce's Kate Winslet for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries, and American Horror Story's Jessica Lange for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series.
The rest of the evening gave its honors to Alec Baldwin of 30 Rock for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series, Betty White of Hot in Cleveland for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series, and Paul Giamatti of Too Big to Fail for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries.
As White accepted her award, she fondly says to her statue, "I remember you, sweetheart." After a little research, I was reminded that she had received the SAG Life Achievement Award two years ago in 2010. This year's honor went to Mary Tyler Moore, who was presented with the award by former TV husband, Dick Van Dyke.
I am so happy The Help got its much deserved spotlight at the SAG Awards. But what does that mean for this year's Academy Awards? Will The Artist take home the Best Picture Award? Or will it be The Descendants? Does The Help even stand a chance? Guess we will just have to wait and see when the show airs on Sunday, February 26th. Tune in!
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