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SAG Predictions: Annette Bening Presents -- But Pundits Think Natalie Portman Will Win

Annette Bening
Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images

SAG announced Friday that Annette Bening will introduce The Kids Are All Right at Sunday's Screen Actors Guild Awards, but THR and top pundits predict a Natalie Portman victory (and 14 others).

But not everybody concurs with the herd of independent minds in the Gold Derby pundit poll. "Annette could definitely pull an upset," says MSN Entertainment and Amazon.com writer Anne Hurley, former L.A. Times film editor and first Amazon movies editor. "She was -- not exactly robbed, but a lot of people really thought she deserved an Oscar for American Beauty. Then she barely worked for 10 years. There's a lot of regard for her in Hollywood. The showier performances often win the Oscars, but when actors vote on each other [at SAG], I think they appreciate those roles that aren’t so flamingly over the top. She really grounded that film and reminded viewers why she was such an It Girl before her far-too-early semi-retirement.
I’d love to see Bening win.

"There’s no question Portman gives an amazing performance, but it’s not one full of a lot of nuance. And something in the zeitgeist changed after Jim Carrey’s appearance on SNL. It’s a film/performance that’s begging to be parodied. You certainly can’t mock what Bening does in The Kids.

Actually, that could be the problem. In the epoch of irony, you're nobody 'til somebody roasts you. Especially if you took a decade off. So Bening is busy: After doing Jay Leno and Santa Barbara Film Festival this week, she'll do SAG, Nightline, Charlie Rose, Regis, Jimmy Fallon and, back in L.A., a Laemmle's Music Hall Q&A and retrospective of her highly Oscar-worthy work (The Kids Are All Right and The Grifters) on Feb. 7. This actress is back on the scene. So if one booze-fueled lesbian character cleans up this awards season, it just might not be the one wearing funky feathers and too much makeup.

Here are THR's predicted SAG winners, with a few Hurley and Gold Derby dissents:

Male Lead: Colin Firth

Female Lead: Natalie Portman ("It's a tie between Bening and Portman," says Hurley.)

Male Supporting Actor: Christian Bale

Female Supporting Actor: Melissa Leo

Motion Picture Cast: The Fighter (but only six other Gold Derbyites agree; seven vote The Social Network, as does Hurley).

Outstanding Stunt Ensemble: Inception

Male TV Actor, Drama: Steve Buscemi (five Gold Derby votes for Jon Hamm, nine for Buscemi)

Female TV Actor, Drama: Julianna Margulies (11 Gold Derby votes, but four for Elisabeth Moss. "This was Peggy's season on Mad Men," argues Hurley).

Male TV Actor, Comedy: Chris Colfer (but Steve Carell and Ty Burrell split the Gold Derby vote)

Female TV Actor, Comedy: Jane Lynch

TV Ensemble Drama: Boardwalk Empire (but Gold Derby and Hurley vote Mad Men)

TV Ensemble Comedy: Modern Family (Gold Derby splits it with Glee)

Male Actor, TV Movie/Miniseries: Al Pacino

Female Actor, TV Movie/Miniseries: Claire Danes ("This juggernaut can't be stopped, though I'm already a little weary of it," says Hurley.)

TV Stunt Ensemble: True Blood

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