“Parasite” is now in major contention for this year's Academy Awards.
Continue Reading Below
Bong Joon Ho’s Korean class satire became the first foreign language film to take top honors from the Screen Actors Guild on Sunday, setting itself up as a legitimate best picture contender to the front-runner “1917” at next month’s Academy Awards.
"Parasite" also collected three awards at this year's Golden Globes.
The best ensemble win for “Parasite” came over the starry epics “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood” and “The Irishman.”
It was a surprise but only to a degree. “Parasite,” up for six Oscars including best picture, has emerged as perhaps the stiffest competition for Sam Mendes' “1917,” which won at Saturday's Producer Guild Awards.
Yet until the SAG Awards, the many honors for “Parasite” have seldom included awards for its actors, none of whom were nominated for an Oscar.
Because actors make up the largest percentage of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, their picks are closely watched as an Academy Awards harbinger.
But the last two years, the SAG ensemble winner has not gone on to win best picture: “Black Panther” last year and “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” in 2018. And this year's front-runner, “1917,” more acclaimed for its technical acumen, wasn't nominated by the screen actors.
If “Parasite” can pull off the upset at the Feb. 9 Oscars, it would be the first foreign language film to do so.
Before the win for “Parasite,” the SAG Awards were most notable as a reunion for Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. They each took home awards and celebrated the other's win.
Pitt is headed toward his first acting Academy Award for his supporting performance in “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood," and he added to his front-runner status with a win from the actors' guild. Along the way, his speeches have been full of one-liners and he didn't disappoint Sunday. Pitt, who said he was nursing a flu, looked down at his award and said, “I've got to add this to my Tinder profile.”
Aniston later won an award of her own for best female actor in a drama series for the Apple TV Plus show “The Morning Show.” “What!" she said upon reaching the stage. Aniston finished her speech with a shout-out to her “Murder Mystery” co-star Adam Sandler, whose performance in “Uncut Gems” has gone mostly unrewarded this season despite considerable acclaim.
Along with Pitt, all the Oscar favorites kept their momentum, including wins for Renee Zellweger ("Judy"), Joaquin Phoenix ("Joker") and Laura Dern ("Marriage Story").
Phoebe Waller-Bridge continued her awards sweep for “Fleabag,” a winner at the Emmys and the Golden Globes. Waller-Bridge added a SAG win for best female actor in a comedy series.
“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” also continued its streak, winning best comedy series ensemble for the second straight year, along with a win for Tony Shalhoub. But accepting the ensemble award, the show’s shocked Alex Borstein said she had voted for “Fleabag.”
Robert De Niro was given the guild's lifetime achievement award, an honor presented by Leonardo DiCaprio who, like De Niro, is a frequent leading man for Martin Scorsese. A raucous standing ovation greeted the 76-year-old actor.
“Game of Thrones” closed out its eight-season run with wins for Peter Dinklage for best male actor in a drama series and for best stunt ensemble work. “The Crown” took best ensemble in a drama series. And both “Fosse/Verdon” stars — Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell — won for their performances in the miniseries.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.