The 19th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards took place on Jan. 27, 2013, at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Here is what these Screen Actors Guild Award winners said backstage in the Golden Globe Awards press room.
Best Cast in a Motion Picture
What’s the pressure of making a speech that’s slightly different every time but thanking the same people?
Ben Affleck: That’s not something I thought about. There is absolutely no way that I thought we would win this award. I looked at the other films. You look at the ensemble in “Silver Linings Playbook” or in “Lincoln” or in “Les Mis.” You could make 30 movies out of the casts in those things — 30 great ones.
So I really thought, “Well, no matter what happens, I know we won’t win this, and I’m OK with it.” And I definitely tip my hat to those incredible films.
The only thing I regretted was I want to say how proud I was to have an ensemble that included just the workaday people that make up the bulk of this SAG membership, who come to work, who kill, who try their best because they sh*t on when they go on auditions, and they can’t get an agent, and are struggling uphill all the time. And then when they do get a part, it’s like two lines and they try to make it good.
And still they come in with an attitude that they want to be brilliant, and they want the director to be happy. Those are the people who really move me, and those are the people who vote for this. If you’re an actor and you’re in SAG, I think you understand that.
What was the most challenging part of working on “Argo”?
Tate Donovan: [He says jokingly] Working with Ben. Sorry.
Clea DuVall: I think Ben was making three different movies, and each group of us — the CIA, the Hollywood and the hostages — having it all miraculously feel like the same movie was probably …
Donavan: It wasn’t hard to make …
DuVall: Come on. Let’s not do this here.
Donovan: Working with everyone was so great. Everyone was so good at their jobs. Ben was the smartest guy in the room. We had a great time. It’s embarrassing. It was so much fun!
Affleck: [He makes a “cut” sign across his neck.] Thank you, Tate.
“Argo” is winning a lot of awards. Do you think you’ll win an Oscar for it?
Affleck: I think I’ll be very lucky to have a job, much less any of the awards stuff that goes with it. I’m sort of half-serious about that. It reminds me every time I come to something like this, I’ve been around long enough to deeply appreciate this kind of thing. It doesn’t happen all the time, and it may not come again. It’s really wonderful to have awards, in the sense that they encourage artists. I’m really encouraged by this and thrilled.
Do you think not getting an Oscar nomination for Best Director will hurt “Argo’s” chances of winning Best Picture? The last movie to win Best Picture at the Oscars without the director getting nominated was 1989’s “Driving Miss Daisy.”
Affleck: I didn’t realize that. I don’t do handicapping or try to divine what’s going to happen down the road with movies. I didn’t get nominated as a director. And I thought, “Well, that’s that.” And then I remembered that I was nominated as a producer, which is pretty exciting.
So I’ve gone at it with that approach. I don’t know what’s going to happen. Who knows? Nothing may happen. It’s a wonderful opportunity to be on the ride. I’m really honored.
What was it about the “Argo” story that appeals most to people and makes it such a great movie?
Affleck: I think the answer is two-fold to me. One is that it’s eerily sort of current, in the sense that there are a ton of parallels to what’s going on now, in the state of our country, our relationship to the Islamic world, or relationship with Iran in particular. This is a story about the inception of the conflict we have with Iran. It is ongoing. It has sort of become our main foreign-policy issue.
And we’re also in a place where we’re feeling a little frustrated and stymied as a country. We view ourselves as great, and when we don’t achieve greatness, I think it’s very frustrating for Americans. I think that’s what was happening then with [Jimmy] Carter and the malaise and 18 percent inflation and all sorts of frustrating stuff.
And the CIA, with the help of the Canadians, actually went out and got something right. And that feeling that when things are going really bad and everything’s completely screwed, and you feel like you’re never going to work, you go out there and try something ridiculous out of a uniquely American ingenuity, and it works! That’s what thrilled me about the script.
For more info: Screen Actors Guild Awards website
RELATED LINKS ON EXAMINER.COM:
SAG Award interviews